Let's Change the Way We Talk about HIV

Updated: Nov 13, 2018


In our day to day work we often get caught up in our own cultural bubbles that come with our own acronyms, technical language, and norms. When we talk to someone outside of our immediate field or agency, we might struggle to explain complex concepts behind our work that need lots of translating. Information design is a way to break through the noise of the complex concepts in our field and draw out concrete ideas that make sense to people outside our area of focus. Here is an example of how I used information design to make the concept of HIV-related stigma more concrete for the audience.


Stigma continues to impact people at risk for HIV and those living with HIV. Research tells us that stigma, including labeling, prejudice, stereotyping, and discrimination, prevent people from accessing HIV testing, adopting safe behaviors, and being adherent to their HIV medications. My colleagues wrote a brief on how stigma impacts HIV, and I turned it into quick guide for reducing HIV-related stigma.


The audience for this quick guide includes staff at community based organizations and health departments, clinicians, nurses, and other medical professionals. Providers and other medical professionals use this guide to update their language and reduce HIV-related stigma by creating a more welcoming environment in their medical spaces.


On the back of the quick guide is an overview of stigma, including action steps to reduce HIV stigma.


To see the whole quick guide, click here.

© Sara DeLong