Online Program

Is There An App For That?: Understanding Cancer Communication Preferences Among Men Living with HIV/AIDS

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Shalanda Bynum, PhD, MPH, Department of Preventive Medicine and Biometrics, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD
Lisa Wigfall, PhD, Institute for Partnerships to Eliminate Health Disparities, University of South Carolina - Arnold School of Public Health (Department of Health Services Policy and Management), Columbia, SC
Mariannah Kitandwe, MPH, Preventive Medicine and Biometric, Henry Jackson Foundation, Bethesda, MD
Faith Fletcher, PhD, MA, Community Health Sciences, University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health, Chicago, IL
Alicia Best, PhD, MPH, CHES, College of Public Health, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL
Michael W. Plankey, PhD, Department of Medicine / Division of Infectious Diseases, Georgetown University Medical Center, Washington, DC
Background: Over the decades, the survival rate of men living with HIV/AIDS (MLH) has increased substantially. As MLH live longer, their risk of developing diseases faced by the general population increases. Cancer is now the third most common non-AIDS related cause of death among MLH. Identifying innovative ways to communicate cancer risk is central to curtailing the burden of disease among MLH. Thus, the purpose of this study was to understand MLH cancer communication preferences.

Methods: Twenty MLH were recruited from a community medical practice in Washington, DC and asked to participate in face-to-face qualitative interviews to understand factors related to cancer screening promotion.

Results: Most participants were African American/Black (n=14), non-Hispanic (n=18), self-identified as gay (n=19), mean age=45±8.86 years, mean time since HIV diagnosis=14±8.03 years. Most participants received general health information from their healthcare provider and the internet. Two preferred sources for cancer communication emerged: healthcare provider and mobile media. Most participants expressed that future intervention strategies should utilize mobile media applications frequented by MLH/gay men to increase cancer awareness. Specific intervention content should focus on general awareness/knowledge of cancer risks specific to MLH and cancer screening promotion. An underlying theme was that strategies should be culturally appropriate and refrain from stereotypes that would further stigmatize MLH/gay men.

Conclusions: Mobile media and healthcare providers may be effective channels to communicate cancer information to MLH. Intervention content should be culturally sensitive and focus on cancer awareness/knowledge building. To better ensure cultural sensitivity, cancer prevention/control efforts targeting MLH should utilize community-engaged research approaches.

Learning Areas:

Communication and informatics
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Describe the process and importance of using formative research to inform strategies (i.e. provider-patient, mobile applications) for promoting cancer awareness, knowledge, and screening among men living with HIV/AIDS. Discuss preferred intervention strategies for promoting cancer awareness, knowledge, and screening among men living with HIV/AIDS.

Keyword(s): Communication, Cancer and Men’s Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I led study conceptualization, analysis, and interpretation activities.
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.