Use of Social Media to Improve Engagement, Retention, and Health Outcomes along the HIV Care Continuum – Evaluation and Technical Assistance Center

Abstract: The Evaluation and Technical Assistance Center (ETAC) will be comprised of a collaborative
team of experts from the Department of Family Medicine and the Center for HIV Identification,
Prevention, and Treatment Services (CHIPTS) at the University of California, Los Angeles
(UCLA), and an expert from the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). The ETAC is
guided by three goals:

  1. To provide technical assistance to equip demonstration sites with the skills and capacity to
    design, implement, evaluate and sustain social media-based interventions to improve engagement
    and retention of HIV-positive youth and young adults in HIV medical care.
  2. To conduct a national, multi-site evaluation of social media-based interventions for HIVpositive
    youth and young adults across demonstration sites. We will employ mixed methods to
    understand intervention effectiveness. Overall potential evaluation questions include:

    • To what extent is implementation of each demonstration project’s social media-based
      intervention associated with improvements in identification, engagement, treatment,
      adherence and retention in HIV care among youth and young adults living with HIV?
    • To what extent is implementation of each demonstration project’s social media intervention
      associated with improved utilization and adherence to appropriate HIV care and services?
    • To what extent does each demonstration project’s social media intervention improve
      behavioral and biomedical health outcomes among youth and young adults living with HIV?
    • To what extent is each demonstration project able to engage and retain HIV-positive youth
      and young adults in the use of their social media-based intervention?
    • What is the acceptability and usability of each demonstration project’s social mediadelivered
      interventions among HIV-positive youth and young adults?
    • What site, provider, and client characteristics are associated with engagement in HIV care,
      utilization of HIV clinical and support services, and/or behavioral and biomedical health
      outcomes?
    • What individual, interpersonal, cost, and community/societal factors are associated with
      engagement in HIV care, utilization of HIV clinical and social support services, and/or
      behavioral and biomedical health outcomes?
  3. To coordinate dissemination of findings. The ETAC will support demonstration sites in
    disseminating results to ensure that findings are widely distributed to diverse audiences.
    Based on the collaborative team’s research experience in using social media technologies,
    extensive experience providing technical assistance and training, and our ongoing experience
    implementing existing ETACs for other HRSA Special Projects of National Significance
    (SPNS), we are uniquely qualified to serve as the ETAC for this initiative