Reducing self-stigma in people living with HIV in the Netherlands: Preliminary results of the RESET-intervention

Activity: Talk or presentation typesConference contribution (without a publication)Academic


Background: HIV-related self-stigma is associated with poorer health outcomes, reduced quality of life and less access to HIV care and treatment for people living with HIV (PLHIV) worldwide. Unfortunately, programs that effectively target self-stigma among PLHIV remain scarce. The RESilience & Empowerment Training (RESET) is a Dutch face-to-face group workshop for PLHIV aimed at reducing self-stigma comprising three weekly sessions of 2.5 hours each. Preliminary results of the RESET effectiveness evaluation were investigated. Methods: Sixty PLHIV were recruited through a Dutch HIV treatment center (OLVG) and HIV organizations for participation in the intervention and evaluation. For the evaluation, participants completed questionnaires at baseline, post-intervention and at three months follow-up. No control group was included. The primary outcome was self-stigma (HSS); secondary outcomes were quality of life (WHOQOL-BREF), self-esteem (RSES), and empowerment (ESR). Post-intervention effectiveness was evaluated with one-sided paired samples t-tests. Findings: Comparing baseline and post-intervention, participants reported a significant reduction in self-stigma (p < .001, d = .66) and improvement in self-esteem (p < .001, d = .53), resilience (p < .001, d = .41), and empowerment (p = .022, d = .27). Concerning quality of life, participants reported an increase in psychological health (p < .037, d = .24), but no improvement in social support (p = .370, d = .04). Comparisons including follow-up will be incorporated for the conference presentation. Discussion: Preliminary results indicate that the RESET workshop reduces HIV self-stigma and is promising for further implementation.
Period7 Sept 2023
Event title37th Annual Conference of the European Health Psychology Society: Health Psychology for all: Equity, Inclusiveness and Transformation
Event typeConference
Conference number37th
LocationBremen, Germany, BremenShow on map
Degree of RecognitionInternational


  • self-stigma
  • intervention development
  • evaluation