HIV-Related Stigma and Knowledge
in the U.S., 1991-1999


Sample and Procedure


The prevalence and nature of AIDS-related stigma in the United States were measured through telephone surveys conducted with national probability samples of US adults in 1997 and 1999.

For the 1997 survey, the sampling frame was the population of all English-speaking adults (at least 18 years of age) residing in households with telephones within the 48 contiguous states. The sample was drawn using a list-assisted Random Digit Dialing (RDD) procedure. Interviews were fully or substantially completed with 1,309 respondents (response rate = 65.1%).

The 1997 sample was 55.3% female and 79% non-Hispanic White, with a mean age of 44 years (range = 18 - 93), a median educational level of 1-2 years of college or post-secondary school, and a median income of $40-50,000.

Approximately two years later (between September, 1998, and May, 1999), another survey was conducted with a new sample, referred to hereafter as the 1999 survey. It used the same sampling frame and RDD procedure as the 1997 survey. Interviews were fully or substantially completed with 669 new respondents (response rate = 58%).

The 1999 sample was 55% female and 82% non-Hispanic White, with a mean age of 45 years (range = 18 - 89), a median educational level of some college, and a median income of $40-50,000.

All interviews for both surveys were conducted by the Survey Research Center at the University of California at Berkeley, using their computer-assisted telephone interviewing (CATI) system. No limit was set on the number of recontact attempts for each number. Upon reaching an adult, the interviewer enumerated the first names of all household members 18 years or older. The target respondent was selected at random from that list.

The median duration of the interview was 44 minutes in both years.

To examine trends, we compare data from the 1997 and 1999 surveys to findings from a previously reported 1990-91 national telephone survey (hereafter referred to as the 1991 survey). The 1991 survey results presented below use unweighted data and are based on that study's primary sample (N = 538), which was selected using RDD procedures and interview methods comparable to those in the 1997 and 1999 surveys.

Measures   The exact wording of the questions is reproduced in the results (on the following pages) and can be downloaded in Adobe Acrobat format.

    Results of the study

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Download a copy of HIV-related stigma and knowledge in the United States: Prevalence and trends, 1991-1999.

    AIDS Stigma Page


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