HPV vaccination is a safe and effective method of protecting against associated cancers, and uptake rates remain low among adolescents. Few studies have examined how social media use contributes to HPV-related knowledge gaps among parents and caregivers.

To investigate the association between social media use and HPV-related awareness and knowledge, focusing on differences by gender and race/ethnicity among a nationally representative sample of adults with children in the household.

Compared to non-users, one analysis associated two, three, or four social media behaviors with greater HPV awareness. Increased social media use was associated with increased HPV vaccine awareness. Men, African American, Hispanic, and Asian American respondents were less likely to be aware of HPV or HPV vaccine. Social media use was not associated with cancer knowledge.

Increased social media use is associated with an increased awareness of HPV and HPV vaccine for adults with children in the household. Health care professionals can utilize social media-based efforts to increase knowledge of the benefits of HPV vaccination as cancer prevention, which may be a precursor to reducing HPV vaccine hesitancy and encouraging uptake to decrease cancer incidence rates among vulnerable populations.

Reference: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/21645515.2020.1824498