The LGBT Health & Development Program


g2g-logoThe Guy2Guy study, officially titled “Harnessing the Power of Text Messaging to Invigorate AMSM HIV Preventive Behavior,” was a text messaging-based HIV prevention project designed specifically for adolescent men who have sex with men (AMSM), ages 14-18. This study is a joint collaboration between the IMPACT Program at Northwestern University and the Center for Innovative Public Health Research, a non-profit research group in California.

AMSM are facing increasing incidence of HIV and account for almost 70% of HIV diagnoses among young people in the US, with most transmission occurring through condomless sex. Nonetheless, the majority of prevention programs focus primarily on adults and heterosexual youth. This study seeks to address this problem through the development of an innovative  intervention that uses a modality that more than half of adolescents already use on a daily basis – text messaging.

The program involves six weeks of text messaging content delivered through a pilot randomized controlled trial conducted among AMSM throughout the United States.  In addition to receiving messages aimed at increasing safe-sex behavior, intervention participants also have real-time access to peer-based support.

This text messaging study completed enrollment of over 300 adolescent gay, bisexual, and queer males in November 2014, and participant follow-up assessments were completed in 2015.

Investigators:  Brian Mustanski, PhD; Michele Ybarra, MPH, PhD
Collaborators: Jeffrey Parsons, PhD, MA; Sheana Bull, PhD, MPH
Funder:  National Institute of Mental Health

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