Where can I get an HIV test? There’s an App for that.
Sonia K. González, Public Health
Faculty Advisor: Jessie Daniels
NML Awards: The New Media Lab Digital Dissertation Award (April 2013), The History and Public Health Award (March 2013)
Young people between 13 and 29 years old have the highest HIV incidence rates and a substantial need for sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services. In addition, this population has a high proportion of smartphone ownership in comparison to other age groups. Smartphone applications and mobile technologies offer the potential to provide information (e.g., proper condom use, directions to a testing site, PEP or Plan B) to this highly vulnerable population and their networks, allowing users to access information when it is needed most. The project will expand researchers’ limited knowledge about how best to educate and intervene among Latina and Black women 18 to 25 years old to prevent HIV/STIs. The findings of my research will contribute to a better understanding of how smartphone apps impact Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) knowledge and connection to services. Support from the NML has allowed me to develop mock ups of the app, build an initial install of the app, pretest the mock-ups and beta version of the app in focus groups, edit audio for the app. I am currently working on finalizing the app, which will be used for my dissertation later this year.