People around the world continue to face barriers to accessing quality health care and enjoying the highest attainable standard of health, despite the right to be free from discrimination being enshrined in multiple human rights treaties, national laws and constitutions.
Why this occurs varies between countries and communities, but some barriers are present everywhere. Evidence shows that people are often stigmatized and discriminated in health-care settings because of their HIV status, race, age, sex, sexual orientation or gender identity, or an intersection of many other grounds.
There are several initiatives that aim at addressing HIV-related discrimination, but they often lack a concerted approach. To bring together current efforts from all relevant stakeholders to ensure that everyone, everywhere, enjoys health services without discrimination, UNAIDS and the Program on Global Health and Human Rights, University of Southern California, have partnered to map out existing tools to assess and address HIV-related stigma and discrimination in health care.
The web-based repository and tool finder at www.zeroHIVdiscrimination.com will enhance knowledge of existing tools and facilitate their use.
“UNAIDS REITERATES ITS COMMITMENT TO ADDRESSING THE GAPS IN SOCIAL JUSTICE AND INCLUSION THAT ARE PRECLUDING EFFORTS TO END THE AIDS EPIDEMIC. HIV-RELATED STIGMA AND DISCRIMINATION IN HEALTH-CARE SETTINGS HAVE SUBSTANTIAL NEGATIVE IMPACTS ON PEOPLE’S QUALITY OF LIFE AND USE OF SERVICES AS WELL AS ON THE OVERALL HIV RESPONSE.”
“RECENT GLOBAL TARGETS AND COMMITMENTS ON HIV-RELATED STIGMA AND DISCRIMINATION IN HEALTH-CARE SETTINGS ILLUSTRATE INCREASING UNDERSTANDING THAT WE CANNOT SUCCESSFULLY ADDRESS HIV WITHOUT ADDRESSING STIGMA AND DISCRIMINATION IN HEALTH CARE. MAKING ACCESSIBLE THE RANGE OF AVAILABLE TOOLS TO FACILITATE THIS WORK IS AN IMPORTANT CONTRIBUTION TO THE HIV RESPONSE AT THE LOCAL, NATIONAL AND GLOBAL LEVELS.”