PositiveLinks (PL) is a mobile application developed at University of Virginia for people living with HIV. Given the prevalence of hypertension in countries like Uganda, it was recently piloted there to see its acceptability among patients and to help them monitor their mood, medication etc.
The results show positive social support among patients for PositiveLinks and high medicine adherence in patients using the application. The study conducted remotely between Uganda and UVA has been accepted for publication in JAMIA Open Journal. One of the lead researchers for the study - Beatrice Mugabirwe, spoke about the research.
How did you decide to try using PositiveLinks for Hypertension patients?
Mugabirwe: Considering the high prevalence of hypertension in Uganda, we thought of a way of helping patients manage their hypertension remotely and piloting Positivelinks application initially used in care for people living with HIV in the USA, among hypertensive patients seemed like a worthwhile idea. Positivelinks was an available solution through a research partnership that required modest modification and the findings after the pilot were positive with minimal barriers.
The study show positive response among the patients, what are some of the other findings from the study?
Mugabirwe: Findings from the study showed that Positivelinks application was very useful, also easy to use, coupled with participants’ satisfaction and a low cost, low maintenance. There were more women than men in the study, however its important to note that, this was a two-center pilot study with a small sample.
Do you see this becoming a way to support patients with hypertension? What are some of the other patients who would benefit from it?
Mugabirwe: Yes, self-management is an important aspect of chronic disease management, with the positive attitude towards Positivelinks application, patients could remotely manage their condition. This mobile health application would also benefit diabetes, HIV patients etc. in low resource settings.
Find out more about the PositiveLinks here.