Key Ingredients to Contact-Based Stigma Change: A Cross-Validation

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Objective:Contact-based antistigma programs seemingly have a larger and more sustained impact than educational strategies. Previous qualitative research of advocates with lived experiences yielded 32 key ingredients of contact-based programs comprising 5 categories. This study sought an independent sample’s feedback of the 32 ingredients.Methods:One hundred advocates with lived experience of mental health conditions who have led, coordinated, and/or delivered antistigma presentations completed an online survey to rank importance of key ingredients.Results:Analysis of rank distributions showed most important ingredients in program categories: (a) design: face-to-face presentations, audience discussion; (b) target: specific group identified (e.g., employers), assessment completed with targets to derive stigma change goals relevant to needs; (c) staff: presenters are people with lived experience; (d) message: message includes on the-way-up stories; and (e) evaluation/follow-up: post-presentation follow-up actions discussed with targets.Conclusions and Implications for Practice:Future research hopes to yield a fidelity measure for contact-based programs.

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