Background:Most government, school, and non-profit staff increasingly use the Internet to obtain work-related information. STDCB and colleagues developed several web-based resources to expand materials outreach and increase provider capacity.
Objectives:1. Increase provider access to medically-accurate sexual health information via technology-based tools. 2. Increase provider capacity to integrate accurate STD information into programs.
Methods: STDCB, CFHC and Adolescent Sexual Health Working Group (ASHWG) developed several electronic resources and distributed them through STD Community Interventions Program (SCIP) and web-based downloads. Resources included online resource-sharing site (‘SWAP’); STD 101 for Teens presentation, two podcasts; integrated adolescent data tables; adolescent sexual health provider core competencies; STD racial disparities facilitator guide; online STD Overview provider training; and electronic youth social marketing toolkit (YSMT).
Results: Since September 2007 through August 2009, SWAP elicited 11,158 unique pageviews and 24,822 downloads. From December 2007 through August 2009, 1,371 downloads of STD 101 for Teens were accessed. From February through August 2009, more than 1,300 racial disparities guides, data tables, and core competencies were electronically distributed. The STD training and YSMT will post live by November 2009. SCIP online evaluations from June 2009 in 11 counties showed that more than 80% (N = 395) of providers used one or more tools, 43% added new content, and 55% indicated more or much more confidence in explaining STD facts.
Conclusions: The overwhelming response from providers to online resources and training demonstrates that cost-effective, electronic resources increase access to medically-accurate STD information, increase provider capacity, and improve STD program quality.
Implications for Programs, Policy, and/or Research: Technical assistance for the use of electronic methods can be provided to public health colleagues. Online capacity-building tools can decrease staff time; duplication of effort; and travel, printing, and shipping expenses; and can increase access to accurate public health information across disciplines.