Pilot feasibility trial of the MyPEEPS mobile app to reduce sexual risk among young men in 4 cities

Matt Ignacio, Robert Garofalo, Cynthia Pearson, Lisa M. Kuhns, Josh Bruce, D. Scott Batey, Asa Radix, Uri Belkind, Marco A. Hidalgo, Sabina Hirshfield, Rebecca Schnall*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Objectives: Our study team adapted the MyPEEPS (Male Youth Pursuing Empowerment, Education, and Prevention around Sexuality) curriculum, an evidence-based human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) prevention intervention, from a face-to-face, group-based intervention to an individual-level mobile responsive web-based intervention to improve HIV risk behaviors in very young men, aged 13-18 years. Materials and methods: In adapting the MyPEEPS intervention to mobile app, we used a series of methodologies, including expert panel reviews, weekly team meetings with the software development company, and conducted in-depth interviews with very young men. Following the iterative process, we conducted a 6-week pre-post feasibility pilot trial with 40 young men in Birmingham, AL; Chicago, IL; New York City, NY; and Seattle, WA. Primary outcomes of interest were uptake of the app, accessibility and satisfaction. Results: Across all 4 sites, 62.5% (25/40) of participants completed all modules in the app in an average of 28.85 (SD 21.69) days. Participants who did not attend to the follow-up visit did not complete any of the app modules. Overall participants reported that the app was easy to use, useful and has the potential to improve their sexual health knowledge and behavior and awareness in risky contexts. Participants also highly rated the app, information and interface quality of the app. Discussion: Lessons learned from the pilot included the need for reminder systems and providing anticipatory guidance about Internet connectivity when using the app. These changes will be incorporated into study procedures for our multisite trial. Conclusion: Overall, participants found the app to be highly usable and have the potential to positively improve their sexual risk behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)272-279
Number of pages8
JournalJAMIA Open
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2019


  • Adolescents
  • HIV prevention
  • Mobile app

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Informatics


Dive into the research topics of 'Pilot feasibility trial of the MyPEEPS mobile app to reduce sexual risk among young men in 4 cities'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this