Barriers to using text message appointment reminders in an HIV clinic

Brianna L. Norton, Anna K. Person, Catherine Castillo, Christopher Pastrana, Melanie Subramanian, Jason E. Stout

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

21 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

INTRODUCTION: Failure to attend medical appointments among persons living with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) has been associated with poor health outcomes. Text message appointment reminders are a novel tool to potentially improve appointment attendance, but the feasibility of this tool among persons living with HIV in the United States is unknown.

SUBJECTS AND METHODS: We conducted a randomized, controlled trial of text message reminders in a large HIV clinic. Patients who declined enrollment were asked for reasons for declining. For all patients randomized, demographic and clinical data were collected from medical records.

RESULTS: Of 94 patients screened for the study, 42 (45%) did not elect to participate; the most common reason for declining participation was the lack of either a cell phone or text messaging service. Cost, comfort with text messaging, and privacy were other major barriers to study enrollment. Among the 25 subjects randomized to receive text messages, 6 (24%) had their phones disconnected prior to the appointment reminder date. Ultimately, there were no differences in clinic attendance rates between the group that received text reminders versus the group that did not (72% versus 81%, p=0.42) in an intention-to-treat analysis.

CONCLUSIONS: Although text message reminders may be successful in certain groups of patients, barriers must be addressed before they are used as a universal approach to improve clinic attendance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)86-89
Number of pages4
JournalTelemedicine journal and e-health : the official journal of the American Telemedicine Association
Volume20
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014
Externally publishedYes

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Text Messaging
Appointments and Schedules
HIV
Cell Phones
Intention to Treat Analysis
Privacy
Medical Records
Randomized Controlled Trials
Demography
Costs and Cost Analysis
Health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Barriers to using text message appointment reminders in an HIV clinic. / Norton, Brianna L.; Person, Anna K.; Castillo, Catherine; Pastrana, Christopher; Subramanian, Melanie; Stout, Jason E.

In: Telemedicine journal and e-health : the official journal of the American Telemedicine Association, Vol. 20, No. 1, 01.01.2014, p. 86-89.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Norton, Brianna L. ; Person, Anna K. ; Castillo, Catherine ; Pastrana, Christopher ; Subramanian, Melanie ; Stout, Jason E. / Barriers to using text message appointment reminders in an HIV clinic. In: Telemedicine journal and e-health : the official journal of the American Telemedicine Association. 2014 ; Vol. 20, No. 1. pp. 86-89.
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