Project Lead(s): Agnes Nyabigambo
In Uganda, mathematical models estimate that the annual number of new HIV infections increased by 11.4% between 2007/08 and 2009/10 in the general population, and by 16.4% among adults.
Recent studies in Uganda reveal inconsistent condom use, increases in multiple sexual partner rates, extra-marital sex and a decline in HIV/AIDS knowledge.
The project sought to develop a culturally relevant and enjoyable mobile gaming app to enhance HIV prevention knowledge among people aged 18 to 30 years.
Through focus group discussions, six themes were identified that guided the development of the HIV prevention information gaming app: knowledge of HIV/AIDS, knowledge of HIV prevention methods, HIV-related risk behaviour, assessing general gaming practices, content, ease of use and incentives to play an HIV/AIDS prevention game.
The app was pilot-tested through a randomized control trial (RCT).
The RCT enrolled 154 students from a cohort of 1,512 students attending Makerere University in Uganda.
Results showed that playing the game significantly increased the students’ knowledge about HIV (as measured by an increase in the average score on the HIV KQ 18 from 12.52 to 12.95).
The study also showed a higher proportion of students (48%) who played the game demonstrated increased HIV knowledge, compared to those who did not play the game (45%).
Knowledge of the project was disseminated in conferences and publications.
The project team believes the project has the potential to scale, and will partner with phone or telecom companies to support further development and improvement of the application, based on student feedback received.
The team also plans to build an advertising interface as a source of funds generation and to make the app usable on all smart phone operating systems.