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Int J Soc Psychiatry. 2014 Sep;60(6):595-605. doi: 10.1177/0020764013507248. Epub 2013 Oct 21.

Patterns of stigma toward schizophrenia among the general population: a latent profile analysis.

Author information

1
Laboratory of Neuroscience (LIM 27), Department and Institute of Psychiatry, School of Medicine, University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil alexandre.loch@usp.br.
2
Laboratory of Neuroscience (LIM 27), Department and Institute of Psychiatry, School of Medicine, University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil.
3
Department of General and Social Psychiatry, Psychiatric University Hospital, University of Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland.
4
Department of General and Social Psychiatry, Psychiatric University Hospital, University of Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland Collegium Helveticum, a Joint Research Institute between the University of Zurich & ETH Zurich, Switzerland.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Our purpose was to assess stigma toward schizophrenia in a representative sample of the Brazilian general population.

METHODS:

The sample consisted of 1015 individuals interviewed by telephone. A vignette describing someone with schizophrenia was read, and four stigma aspects regarding this hypothetical individual were assessed: stereotypes, restrictions, perceived prejudice and social distance. Latent profile analysis searched for stigma profiles among the sample. Multinomial logistic regression was used to find correlates of each class.

RESULTS:

Four stigma profiles were found; 'no stigma' individuals (n = 251) mostly displayed positive opinions. 'Labelers' (n = 222) scored high on social distance; they more often had familial contact with mental illness and more often labeled the vignette's disorder as schizophrenia. 'Discriminators', the group with the majority of individuals (n = 302), showed high levels of stigmatizing beliefs in all dimensions; discriminators were significantly older. 'Unobtrusive stigma' individuals (n = 240) seemed to demonstrate uncertainty or low commitment since they mostly answered items with the middle/impartial option.

CONCLUSION:

Some findings from the international literature were replicated; however, familial contact increased stigma, possibly denoting a locally modulated determinant. Hereby, our study also adds important cross-cultural data by showing that stigma toward schizophrenia is high in a Latin-American setting. We highlight the importance of analyzing the general population as a heterogeneous group, aiming to better elaborate anti-stigma campaigns.

KEYWORDS:

Brazil; Social distance; discrimination; prejudice; stereotype

PMID:
24146365
DOI:
10.1177/0020764013507248
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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