BACKGROUND: Stigma and discrimination are interrelated and are breaking the fundamental human rights. Both are associated with tuberculosis (TB) disease since ever and have negative influence on activities aimed at TB prevention, treatment and control, both at individual, community and societal level.
AIM: To determine the magnitude of TB stigma in Republic of Macedonia, identify root causes and detect main determinants associated with it.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: Cross-sectional study was performed on 315 TB patients registered in the period Jul, 2012-Jun, 2013, using selected module from World Health Survey questionnaire. Self-reported data is collected through face to face interview conducted by trained directly observed treatment (DOT) nurses in the patients’ home.
RESULTS: 16.7% TB patients have not received any assistance when diagnosed with TB and 8.4% were treated badly by a member of the family or close friends because of the disease, consequences ranging from living the patient completely, refusal to talk or telling other people that the person is infected. An odd for such behavior were higher if the patient is male, married, have no formal education or have completed only primary school, is unemployed and lives in rural area.
CONCLUSION: Understanding the origins of TB stigma is integral to reducing its impact on health. Our survey has provided a baseline on the magnitude of existent stigma associated with TB disease and has identified main determinants that trigger stigmatizing behavior.