Objectives: To design and assess HIV- and homosexuality-related stigma scales in a developing world context.
Methods: A respondent-driven sampling survey was conducted among 351 men who have sex with men (MSM) in Shenzhen, China. Exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses were used to examine and determine the latent factors of stigma sub-scales.
Results: Factor analyses identified three sub-scales associated with homosexuality and HIV stigma: public homosexual stigma (10 items), self homosexual stigma (8 items) and public HIV stigma (7 items). There were no items with cross-loading onto multiple factors, supporting the distinctness of the constructs that these scales were meant to measure. The fit indices in confirmatory factor analysis provide evidence for the hypothesized three-factor structure of associations (the chi-square / degree ratio = 1.84, CFI = 0.91, RMSEA = 0.05, and SRMR = 0.05). Reliability of the three scales was excellent (Cronbach alpha: 0.78-0.85) and stable across split samples and for the data as a whole.
Conclusions: The selection of three latent factors was supported by both psychometric properties and theories of stigmatization. The scales are brief and suitable for use in developing countries where less time-consuming measurement is preferable.