Stigmatisation associated with COVID-19 in the general Colombian population

Carlos Arturo Cassiani-Miranda, Adalberto Campo-Arias, Andrés Felipe Tirado-Otálvaro, Luz Adriana Botero-Tobón, Luz Dary Upegui-Arango, María Soledad Rodríguez-Verdugo, María Elena Botero-Tobón, Yinneth Andrea Arismendy-López, William Alberto Robles-Fonnegra, Levinson Niño, Orlando Scoppetta

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle in an indexed scientific journalpeer-review

    30 Scopus citations


    Background: As the COVID-19 pandemic progresses, the fear of infection increases and, with it, the stigma-discrimination, which makes it an additional problem of the epidemic. However, studies about stigma associated with coronavirus are scarce worldwide. Aims: To determine the association between stigmatisation and fear of COVID-19 in the general population of Colombia. Method: A cross-sectional study was carried out. A total of 1,687 adults between 18 and 76 years old (M = 36.3; SD = 12.5), 41.1% health workers, filled out an online questionnaire on Stigma-Discrimination and the COVID-5 Fear Scale, adapted by the research team. Results: The proportion of high fear of COVID-19 was 34.1%; When comparing the affirmative answers to the questionnaire on stigma-discrimination towards COVID-19, it was found that the difference was significantly higher in the general population compared to health workers in most of the questions evaluated, which indicates a high level of stigmatisation in that group. An association between high fear of COVID-19 and stigma was evidenced in 63.6% of the questions in the questionnaire. Conclusion: Stigma-discrimination towards COVID-19 is frequent in the Colombian population and is associated with high levels of fear towards said disease, mainly people who are not health workers.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)728-736
    Number of pages9
    JournalInternational Journal of Social Psychiatry
    Issue number6
    StatePublished - Sep 2021

    Bibliographical note

    Funding Information:
    The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: This work was financed by the The Research Vice-rectory of Universidad del Magdalena through Resolution No 266 of 2020.

    Publisher Copyright:
    © The Author(s) 2020.


    • Coronavirus infections (source MeSH)
    • Social stigma
    • fear


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