Date of Conferral



Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)




Robert L. McWhirt


HIV-related stigma from healthcare provider attitudes, beliefs, perceptions, or misconceptions has been a barrier to healthcare delivery. This project was conducted to examine whether an HIV-related stigma education provided to healthcare clinic staff with a focus on advance practice registered nurses can improve knowledge and empathy toward young men of color who have sex with men (MSM), which can lead to improved overall quality of healthcare through increased health behaviors and retention in care. An educational intervention was conducted utilizing a blended-learning environment focused on social cognitive theory to influence social behavior change among healthcare professionals, increasing their exposure, knowledge, and awareness of HIV-related stigma. A self-administered pretest and posttest, online videos, and PowerPoint presentations were utilized to measure drivers of HIV-related stigma and assess knowledge growth post-intervention of clinic staff. A total of 7 of 15 clinic staff voluntarily participated in the full educational intervention. The greatest growth was in dressing wounds and drawing blood, with pre-intervention results indicating that 14.2% were worried, 28.5% were a little worried, and 42.8% were not worried and post-intervention results showing that 0% were worried, 14.2 were a little worried, and 71.4% were not worried. Addressing healthcare provider HIV-related stigma provides social change by increasing access and care for at-risk young MSM of color supporting national HIV prevention strategies and goals.