Survey and Pilot of Cell Phone Texting to Antiretroviral Therapy Patients in Johannesburg
Survey on Cell phones access, usage and privacy for making use of SMS for Antiretroviral Therapy (ART) adherence. This source on a developing country is non peer-reviewed.
Abstract: Cell phones are a possible communication channel for supporting adherence to antiretroviral therapy (ART) Such interventions could benefit from a clearer understanding of cell phone access, usage and privacy in developing countries. These aspects were examined by a survey of 65 respondents in a Johannesburg ART clinic. Survey results indicate that respondents had high access to cell phones, moderate use of cell phones, and moderate privacy on cell phones. Based on this formative research, a pilot study sent text messages to 27 ART patients in the same Johannesburg clinic. The pilot tested the consistency, confidentiality, and user satisfaction of text messages as preconditions for future studies on ART adherence. Pilot results indicate high consistency of message reception and high user satisfaction. No accidental disclosure of HIV status was reported, though participants discussed the pilot texts with their peers. This study suggests further opportunities and safeguards for sending text messages to ART patients.