Acceptability and Feasibility of a Cell Phone Support Intervention for Youth Living with HIV with Nonadherence to Antiretroviral Therapy

AIDS Patient Care STDS. 2015 Jun;29(6):338-45. doi: 10.1089/apc.2014.0282. Epub 2015 Apr 30.


A pilot randomized clinical trial of youth ages 15-24 nonadherent to antiretroviral therapy (ART) utilizing daily cell phone support was found to have significant improvement in self-reported adherence and HIV RNA. Understanding acceptability and feasibility is critical for future implementation in clinic settings. Exit interviews were obtained from participants and adherence facilitators (AF). Acceptability was assessed from content analysis of exit interviews. Feasibility was assessed via intervention retention and study retention rates. Thirty-seven eligible youth were enrolled with 19 assigned to the intervention. Seven (37%) discontinued the intervention either due to missing over 20% of calls for two consecutive months (N=5) or missing 10 consecutive calls (N=2). Sixteen participants completed exit interviews, 15 reported the call length was just right, 13 reported they would have liked to continue calls after the 24-week intervention, and all participants reported they would recommend the intervention to friends. Scheduling and making calls required less than 1 h per week per participant. Providing cell phone support to youth nonadherent to ART was acceptable and feasible. While the cost is low compared to the price of ART, healthcare systems will need to explore how to cover the cost of providing cell phones (incentive).

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Anti-HIV Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Cell Phone*
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • HIV Infections / drug therapy*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Medication Adherence*
  • Motivation
  • Patient Acceptance of Health Care / statistics & numerical data*
  • Qualitative Research
  • Reminder Systems*
  • Young Adult


  • Anti-HIV Agents