Community, family, and partner-related stigma experienced by pregnant and postpartum women with HIV in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

AIDS Behav. 2009 Dec;13(6):1197-204. doi: 10.1007/s10461-008-9501-2. Epub 2008 Dec 16.


Pregnant and postpartum women with HIV often face stigma and discrimination at home and in the community. In Vietnam, associations between HIV and the "social evils" of drug use and sex work contribute to stigmatization of people with HIV. We conducted a qualitative study to explore discrimination experienced by HIV-positive pregnant and postpartum women in Ho Chi Minh City at home and in the community. We conducted 20 in-depth interviews and two focus group discussions. Participants described managing disclosure of their HIV infection because of fear of stigma and discrimination, particularly to the wider community. In cases where their HIV status was disclosed, women experienced both discrimination and support. The findings highlight the need for targeted interventions to support pregnant and postpartum women with HIV, particularly during this period when they are connected to the healthcare system and more readily available for counseling.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Family
  • Female
  • Focus Groups
  • HIV Infections / ethnology
  • HIV Infections / psychology*
  • HIV Seropositivity / psychology*
  • Humans
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Male
  • Postpartum Period / psychology
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications, Infectious / psychology
  • Prejudice*
  • Qualitative Research
  • Social Isolation
  • Social Support
  • Stereotyping*
  • Urban Population
  • Vietnam
  • Young Adult