[Willingness to Receive Text Message Appointment Reminders Among Patients With HIV Infection].

Publication Date: 
Jan 27, 2016

BACKGROUND: Wireless communication technologies are increasingly being used in the fields of healthcare, with platforms such as mobile health (mHealth) being widely implemented in HIV care. The rapid expansion of mobile technologies, including smartphone applications (apps), provides a unique opportunity to effectively remind patients about regular follow-up appointments, thereby ensuring patient retention and resulting in a higher quality of care for HIV patients.

PURPOSE: This study examines mobile phone users' usage patterns, application usage, and challenges associated with the use of a mobile phone reminder system in order to improve retention in HIV care among patients.

METHODS: A cross-sectional descriptive study was conducted to collect data on the usage and patterns of communication technologies from 405 patients.

RESULTS: This study included 384 of the 405 eligible patients, resulting in a response rate of 94.8%. A majority of participants (73.3%) indicated their willingness to receive reminders via a text message regarding their upcoming HIV clinical appointments. After adjusting for sociodemographic and clinical variables, multiple logistic regression models indicated that the willingness to receive reminder messages was independently associated with having a college-level education (AOR=2.06, 95% CI [1.05, 4.04]) and with having prior experience with using electronic reminders (AOR=4.01, 95% CI [1.51, 10.66]).

CONCLUSIONS/IMPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICE: Protection of personal information was identified as the most important factor that must be addressed in order to increase patient willingness to use a cell phone reminder system. Our findings suggest that mobile technologies are a widely used and an acceptable method for improving quality of care for HIV patients.

Abstract available from the publisher.

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