We wanted to learn the views and preferred characteristics of young men who have sex with men (YMSM) for a mobile health service aimed to assist human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination. YMSM were invited to engage in online focus groups using a popular social/sexual networking app. The discussions were meant to extract what men would desire in sexual health and HPV-specific mHealth application. Descriptive statistics were used to evaluate demographic data, while traditional content analysis was used to assess focus group data. There were 48 YMSM in attendance. The average age was 23.4 years, and 70.0 percent identified as Black. The qualitative themes were general HPV knowledge and awareness, existing trends in technology usage, desired app characteristics, and wanted app content. Youth indicated various degrees of HPV awareness, used apps for social engagement, travel, banking, gaming, news, and entertainment, and few used apps to assist personal health or connect with healthcare institutions.
Participants sought trustworthy, relatable, secure, and simple-to-use interfaces that delivered sexual health and HPV information in a positive context. The proposed methods for engaging adolescents artistically and directly connecting them to health care. We discovered a culturally relevant youth-led method to promoting HPV vaccination and sexual health among YMSM.