Stigma is a key driver of inequity and affects myriad health behaviors and outcomes, especially those related to substance use disorder, HIV, and mental illness. Intersectionality, theorized by Black feminist scholars, emphasizes the intersecting, structural processes that place people at risk for harm. As people’s multiple identities are inseparable and non-additive, their experiences of stigma are complex and multifaceted. Nurse educators, scholars, and clinicians form the foundation of patient care and scientific advancements to improve the health and well-being of diverse patient populations. The nursing profession must contend with the underlying drivers of intersectional stigma, including systemic racism and White supremacy, classism, and gender inequality. Centering equity, strengthening recruitment/retention of minoritized nursing students, implementing stigma training in curricula, improving the nursing leadership pipeline, moving beyond implicit bias training and deficit models, and incorporating intersectional and implementation science approaches in research can help advance equity for clinicians and patient populations.
The role of nursing in loosening the pervasive grip of intersectional stigma
Journal of Psychosocial Nursing and Mental Health Services, 60 (12), 9-15. doi: 10.3928/02793695-20221109-04.