236412 Using chat and text technologies to answer sexual and reproductive health questions: A pilot conducted by Planned Parenthood

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Leslie Kantor, MPH , National Director of Education Initiatives, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, New York, NY
Deborah Levine, MSW, MAT , Director of Online Health Education and Services, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, New York, NY
Planned Parenthood is developing the capacity to use new technologies to bring young people immediate answers to their personal sexual health questions anytime, anywhere, from a source they trust. In this way, young people can receive the sexuality information and services they need in the manner in which they want to receive them. This initiative addresses two seemingly opposing preferences: young people often feel that they need personalized, situation-specific advice, and they prefer to communicate via anonymous methods such as texting and online chatting. In this workshop, Planned Parenthood will provide an overview of results from the first year of a program to provide both chat and text as an option for answering questions about sexual health and sexuality.

The results to be presented include the demographics of who uses these options, a thematic analysis of concerns raised, and the types of sexual health services needed. In addition, outcome evaluations related to whether the service has immediately reduced clients' anxiety will be presented. Lessons learned related to recruiting, training and supervising of staff, launching and monitoring the services, limitations of the current models, and scaling the program to better reach more of our intended audience will be presented.

Planned Parenthood is the largest provider of sexual health services and sexuality education in the United States, providing sexual health services to more than 3 million people in its health centers, sex education to 1.2 million people, and information about sexuality to more than 24 million visitors online annually.

Learning Areas:
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Communication and informatics
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs

Learning Objectives:
describe the demographics of people that are using chat and text to get information about sexual health list the main concerns that people present with analyze the strengths and limitations of one approach to chat and text discuss the potential for scaling up and replication

Keywords: Health Communications, Technology

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been a sexuality educator for over 25 years and am on staff at the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University where I lead their Reproductive and Family Health academic track.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.