Addressing the slow uptake of HIV testing in Malawi: The role of stigma, self-efficacy, and knowledge in the Malawi BRIDGE project

Sima Berendes, Rajiv N. Rimal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This study was carried out to test the hypothesis that HIV-related stigma would function as a barrier to uptake of HIV testing and that knowledge and self-efficacy would serve as facilitators. We also hypothesized that exposure to a behavior-change campaign would be associated with lower levels of stigma and higher levels of knowledge and self-efficacy. We conducted two separate cross-sectional surveys as part of the Malawi BRIDGE Project, including one at baseline in eight districts (n = 891), and another at mid-term in four districts in Malawi (n = 881). HIV-related knowledge, self-efficacy, and lack of stigma were positively associated with HIV testing. A positive association was also found between program exposure, on one hand, and knowledge, self-efficacy, and lack of stigma, on the other. These findings suggest that important psychosocial variables are linked with people's likelihood of HIV testing, and that these variables may be influenced by behavior-change programs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)215-228
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of the Association of Nurses in AIDS Care
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - May 2011



  • Behavior-change program
  • HIV
  • HIV testing
  • Self-efficacy
  • Stigma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Advanced and Specialized Nursing

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