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Using Social Media to Enhance Provider Network for HIV and Harm Reduction Service Integration in Vietnam.

  • Author(s): Li, Li
  • Lin, Chunqing
  • Feng, Nan
  • Le, Tuan Anh
  • Hsieh, Julie
  • Nguyen, Diep Bich
  • Nguyen, Tuan Anh
  • et al.
Abstract

Social media can potentially serve as a platform to coordinate medical care among fragmented health sectors. This paper describes procedures of using social media to enhance antiretroviral therapy (ART) and methadone maintenance treatment (MMT) providers' virtual network for integrated service for HIV-positive people who inject drugs (PWID) in Vietnam. A total of 88 ART and MMT treatment providers participated in person group sessions followed by online virtual support to improve service integration. In-person reunions were held to reinforce Facebook participation and network activities. Content analysis was used to identify keywords and topic categories of the online information exchange. Both MMT and ART providers were actively engaged in online communications. Referral and treatment adherence were the two most frequently discussed topic areas by both the MMT and ART providers. Frequent cross-agency connections were observed. Online provider networks and communities could be built and useful to support treatment providers to improve service integration.

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