Mobile health promotion of human immunodeficiency virus self-testing in the United States

Jamie S. Ko, Chrysovalantis Stafylis, Jeffrey D. Klausner


Background: Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) self-testing could overcome barriers associated with traditional HIV testing and increase people’s awareness of their serostatus. Mobile health, which utilizes mobile wireless technology, could alleviate concerns associated with HIV self-testing and increase access to this screening test.
Methods: We conducted a PubMed, Google Scholar, and Google search to identify research studies and public health programs in the United States that used mobile health to provide HIV self-testing kits for participants. Nine research studies and two public health programs in the United States met the inclusion criteria and were included in the narrative review.
Results: Mobile health interventions delivered through online platforms and smartphone apps tailored towards high-risk populations could promote HIV self-testing distribution, pre- and post-test counseling, and linkage to follow-up care.
Conclusions: Given mobile health’s potential to encourage HIV self-testing, prevention, and treatment among high-risk communities, we included recommendations that incorporated this mode of HIV self- testing into public health programs to appropriately address the HIV epidemic in the United States.