Title

#GlobalHealth on Twitter: Analysis of Tweets on #Malaria, #HIV, #TB, #NCDS, and #NTDS

Document Type

Presentation

Publication Date

11-5-2017

Abstract

Social media enables users to connect globally and engage in conversations on global health issues. Global health advocates use the hashtag #GlobalHealth on Twitter to draw users’ attention to prominent themes on global health, to harness their support, and to advocate for change. Through analyzing five subcorpora within a #GlobalHealth Twitter corpus, we aim to summarize the Twitter global health conversations pertinent to 5 high burden diseases or groups of diseases into 4 major themes. Tweets containing the hashtag #GlobalHealth (n=157,951) from January 1, 2014, to April 30, 2015 were purchased from GNIP Inc. We extracted 5 sub-corpora of tweets, each with one of the top 5 co-occurring disease-specific hashtags (#Malaria, #HIV, #TB, #NCDS, and #NTDS) for further analysis. Unsupervised machine learning (Latent Dirichlet Allocation) was applied to each sub-corpus to categorize the tweets by their underlying topics and obtain the representative tweets of each topic. The topics were grouped into 4 themes (advocacy; epidemiological information; prevention, control and treatment; societal impact) and miscellaneous. In the entire #GlobalHealth corpus (N=157,951), there were 40,266 unique users, 85,168 retweets, and 13,107 unique co-occurring hashtags. Of the 13087 tweets across the 5 subcorpora with co-occurring hashtag #malaria (n=3640), #HIV (n=3557), #NCDS (n=2373), #TB (n=1781) and #NTDS (n=1736), the most prevalent theme was prevention, control and treatment (4339, 33.16%), followed by advocacy (3706, 28.32%), epidemiological information (1803, 13.78%), and societal impact (1617, 12.36%). The rest were miscellaneous (1622, 12.39%). This study highlighted the specific #GlobalHealth Twitter conversation pertinent to malaria, HIV, tuberculosis, non-communicable diseases, and neglected tropical diseases. These conversations reflect the priorities of advocates, funders, policy-makers and practitioners of global health on these high burden diseases as they presented their views and information on Twitter to their followers.

Sponsorship/Conference/Institution

American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene Annual Meeting (ASTMH)

Location

Baltimore, MD

Share

COinS