Table 3

Summary of hypothetical interventions

Author(s) countryParticipants, design, infectionsStudy aimDigital PN interventionOutcomes measured
Partners notifiedPartners testedPartners treatedAcceptabilityPrototype preferencesOther
Carnicer-Pont et al 15
  • MSM

Quantitative descriptive study
  • Survey

Multiple STIs/HIV
Describe current PN practices and assess the intention to use new information and communication technologies for notifying partners of STIs/HIVHypothetical web application✓ *
Clark et al 16
  • MSM and TGW with a partner diagnosed with syphilis, genital herpes, genital ulcer disease, proctitis and/or urethritis in the last 30 days

Quantitative descriptive study
  • Survey

Multiple STIs including HIV
Assess acceptability of internet PN interventions in MSM and TGW who'd recently been diagnosed with an STIInternet✓*
Contesse et al 35
  • Cisgender MSM who have used GSN apps to meet a partner in the last 12 months

  • Four focus groups

Multiple STIs including HIV
Examine how MSM use GNS apps and their perspective regarding delivery of HIV/STI PN and health services through these appsGSN app✓†
Contesse et al 17
  • MSM who have met a partner on a GSN app in the last year

Quantitative descriptive study
  • Online survey

Multiple STIs including HIV
Understand attitudes toward app-based PN, health department presence and sexual health services help inform delivery and development of GSN appGSN app✓†
Gkatzidou et al 36
  • 16–24 years old who own a mobile phone

Qualitative study
  • Nine focus groups

Understand the requirements and acceptability of an eSTI mobile applicationMobile app
  • Self-testing

  • Results

  • Access to treatment

  • PN

John et al 18
  • Gay and bisexual men who self-tested HIV negative

Quantitative descriptive study
  • Survey

Multiple bacterial STIs including HIV
Determine willingness to use HIV self-testing (HIVST), use PDPT and to use GSN app PN after a hypothetical bacterial STI diagnosisGSN app✓†
Kutner et al 40
  • HIV negative MSM and TGW with concurrent sexual partners with three or more episodes of condomless anal sex in the last three months

  • Survey and interview

HIV and syphilis infections
Explore the interest in disclosing test results through a smartphone app dedicated to self- and partner testing for HIV/syphilisSmartphone app
  • Partner screening

  • Sharing of results

Lessard et al 37
  • 21 PrEP users

  • 10 community mediators

  • 5 PrEP prescribers

  • 4 HIV/STI management decision-makers

  • Focus groups and interviews

Multiple STIs including HIV
Describe stakeholders' perspectives on the acceptability of a digital smartphone STI PN tool (WeFLASH)Smartphone app ‘WeFLASH’
  • STI screening reminders

  • Automatic anonymous PN (with connected app users)

✓‡HCP and decision-maker perspective
Mokgatle and Madiba19
South Africa
  • Minibus taxi drivers

Quantitative descriptive study
  • Survey

Multiple STIs including HIV
Assess the perceived use of patient-initiated PN by using referral slips and measure the level of acceptability of provider-initiated PN by using SMS to the personal mobile phones of sexual partnersSMS*
  • *Index patient perspective.

  • †Both Index patient and partner perspectives.

  • ‡HCP/decision-maker perspective.

  • §Reports on positive cases or number of partners with unknown status.

  • GSN, geosocial networking; HCP, healthcare professional; HIVST, HIV self-testing; MSM, men who have sex with men; NCSP, National Chlamydia Screening Program; PDPT, patient delivered partner therapy; PN, partner notification; PrEP, pre-exposure prophylaxis; SMS, short message service; STIs, sexually transmitted infections; TGW, transgender women.