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 subscales.
Results: Factor analyses identified three subscales 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-loadings 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 hypothesised three-factor structure of associations (the χ2/degree ratio = 1.84, CFI = 0.91, RMSEA = 0.05 and SRMR = 0.05). Reliability of the three scales was excellent (Cronbach’s 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 stigmatisation. The scales are brief and suitable for use in developing countries where less time-consuming measurement is preferable.
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Funding: This work was supported by a research grant (107010-41-RGAT) awarded to Liu from the Foundation for AIDS Research.
Competing interests: None.
Ethics approval: The study protocol was approved by the Institutional Review Boards of Virginia Commonwealth University and of Shenzhen Center for Chronic Disease Control and Prevention.
Contributors: HL, TF and HL designed the study and managed all study protocols. HL conducted the statistical analyses and wrote the paper. AR contributed to the writing of the paper.