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Curr Opin Psychol. 2016 Jun 1;9:56-66.

A Review of Social Media Technologies Across the Global HIV Care Continuum.

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1
ElevateU, Los Angeles, CA, USA.
2
University of California Institute for Prediction Technology, Department of Family Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA, USA; UCLA Center for Digital Behavior, Department of Family Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA, USA.

Abstract

HIV remains one of the main health global threats of the 21st century. There is a great need to reach HIV at-risk and HIV+ populations across the HIV care continuum to improve HIV prevention, testing, and treatment. New technologies, such as Social Media (SM) and Social Networking Sites (SNS) have shown early promise in HIV research studies. To assess the state of research on the use of SM/SNSs across the HIV continuum, we conducted a systematic literature review on HIV-related research using SM during the last 10 years. A total of 44 papers were identified, of which 17 (38.6%) were classified as intervention studies and 19 (61.3%) as observational. The focus areas of the studies was evenly distributed between outreach outreach/recruitment (n=15, 34.1%), surveillance/observation (n=13, 29.5%) and prevention/treatment (n=16, 36.4%). Researchers engaged the community through Facebook (n=26, 59.1%), multiple-platforms (n=13, 29.5%), or one of several geo-social networking sites (n=10, 22.7%). Studies primarily targeted MSM (n=24, 54.5%) and youth (n=13, 29.5%) with little research focused on HIV+ populations (n=5, 11.4%). The current state of the field, trends, and limitations of this work are discussed.

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