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Sex Health. 2013 Jul;10(3):224-8. doi: 10.1071/SH12198.

Attitudes to Chlamydia screening elicited using the social networking site Facebook for subject recruitment.

Author information

  • 1Department of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases, The Royal Women's Hospital, Parkville, Australia.



Chlamydia (Chlamydia trachomatis) is the commonest bacterial sexually transmissible infection worldwide and contributes to significant morbidity in females. We examined potential barriers and facilitating factors for screening in young Victorian women, using the social networking site, Facebook to recruit participants.


This was part of a larger study on young women's health that assessed the feasibility of using social networking sites for recruitment. An advertisement was placed on Facebook between May and September 2010, and was visible to eligible women. Women who clicked on the advertisement and expressed their interest in participating were invited to complete a questionnaire either at a study site or online.


In total, 278 participants completed the survey, with 76% reporting willingness to participate in chlamydia screening by recruitment via an online system. Overall, 73% of participants indicated they were comfortable providing a urine sample collected at home for chlamydia screening, with older participants less comfortable with this method (P=0.02, odds ratio (OR)=0.09, 95% confidence interval (CI)=0.01-0.7). Participants expressed comfort with their Pap smear and chlamydia screening being performed together (92.7%), especially those who were aware of human papillomavirus (P<0.01, OR=2.5, 95% CI=1.3-4.7).


This study demonstrated willingness by young Victorian women using Facebook to participate in screening for chlamydia. There was strong acceptance of self-collected sampling, and of combined chlamydia and cervical cytology screening. Facebook may therefore be a feasible way for improving screening coverage at a population level.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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