The purpose of the conference was to bring together researchers, representatives of technology development companies, public policymakers, HIV service providers, and members of the HIV/AIDS community to share cutting-edge research and real-world application of social media, web-based, and mobile technologies for HIV prevention and care. The conference began with opening remarks by Dr. Steve Shoptaw, Co-Director of CHIPTS, and Dr. Sean Young, a CHIPTS investigator whose research focuses on social media and mobile health technologies. The event included keynote presentation from Dr. Indu Subaiya, CEO and Co-Founder at Health 2.0, and presentations from leading experts in the field of technology-based HIV prevention and care, such as Dr. Brian Mustanski of Northwestern University, Dr. Marguerita Lightfoot of the Center for AIDS Prevention Studies at the University of California, San Francisco, Dr. Lynn Miller and Dr. Eric Rice of the University of Southern California, Dr. Nina Harawa of Charles R. Drew University, Dr. Cathy Reback of Friends Research Institute, as well as CHIPTS investigators, Dr. Dallas Swendeman and Dr. Ian Holloway.
To provide a counter-point to the scientific presentations focusing on intervention development and implementation, there was a policy panel discussion that brought together experts in health technology development, HIV service delivery and law and policy to comment on the benefits and challenges to providing technology-based HIV prevention and care. Panelists included Mr. Ramin Bastani, Founder and CEO of HULA (www.GetHula.com), Mr. Brad Sears, JD, Executive Director of the UCLA Charles R. Williams Institute, Dr. Tina Henderson, Project Manager at JWCH Institute of Los Angeles, and Ms. Risa Flynn, Program Manager for Research at the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center. Each brought their individual perspectives to bear on the issue of health information security and privacy protection.
The conference ended with presentations from Dr. Susannah Allison, Program Officer at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) within the Infants, Children and Adolescents Research Program in the Division of AIDS Research, and Dr. Jacqueline Lloyd, Deputy Branch Chief and Health Scientist Administrator in the Prevention Research Branch in the Division of Epidemiology, Services and Prevention Research at the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). Dr. Allison and Dr. Lloyd presented on the currently funded technology-based HIV prevention and care research, future directions and funding priorities for HIV and technology-based research at NIMH and NIDA.
The conference was attended by over 130 participants. Forty percent of the participants were staff from a community-based organization, 30% were researchers, faculty, staff, and/or student from a university/academic institution, 15% were representatives from a technology-development company, 10% were representatives from a health department or government entity, and 6% were members of the local community planning body and or consumers.