The human papillomavirus (HPV) is the most common sexually transmitted infection in the United States. Almost half of HPV infections occur in teens and young adults and can lead to various types of cancers. As a result, the HPV vaccine was developed to target these HPV-related cancers. Even though the vaccine is capable in preventing most HPV-related cancers, the vaccination rate among teens and young adults has been low and disparities exist. Peer education, particularly using social media to disseminate messages, may be one way to improve HPV vaccination rates among young adults. The purpose of this project is to investigate the feasibility and desirability of a social media-based peer education campaign for young adults to increase HPV vaccination rates. One focus group consisting of nine high school students were used to gain insight on their knowledge of the HPV vaccine, their thoughts on being peer educators, and what an intervention will consist of using social media. The focus group discussion was audio-recorded, transcribed and analyzed by a team member to find the important themes. Seven key themes emerged from the focus group. The participants showed limited knowledge of the HPV vaccine and had mixed responses on peer education and social media, which questions how effective peer education and social media would be in promoting the vaccine uptake. These results will be used to inform a future research grant proposal on this topic, with the goal of developing a peer education program about the HPV vaccine on social media.
Recommended CitationBindra, Riva and Leader, DrPH, MPH, Amy, "Peer Education to Promote HPV Vaccine Uptake in Philly Teens" (2020). Master of Public Health Thesis and Capstone Presentations. Presentation 318.