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mHealth Interventions in Low and Middle-Income Countries: A Systematic Review. Glob J Health Sci 2016 9 01;8(9):54429

Date

05/10/2016

Pubmed ID

27157176

Pubmed Central ID

PMC5064069

DOI

10.5539/gjhs.v8n9p183

Abstract

The purpose of this review was to determine whether mHealth interventions were effective in low- and middle-income countries in order to create a baseline for the evidence to support mHealth in developing countries. Studies were identified by searching Medline on 02 October 2014 for articles published in the English language between January 2000 and September 2014. Inclusion criteria were: 1) written in English, 2) completion of an mHealth intervention in a low or middle-income country, 3) measurement of patient outcomes, and 4) participants 18 years of age or older. 7,920 titles were reviewed and 7 were determined eligible based on inclusion criteria. Interventions included a cluster randomized trial, mixed methods study, retrospective comparison of an opt-in text message program, a two-arm proof of concept, single arm trial, a randomized trial, and a single subject design. Five out of seven of the studies showed significant difference between the control and intervention. Currently there is little evidence on mHealth interventions in developing countries, and existing studies are very diverse; however initial studies show changes in clinical outcomes, adherence, and health communication, including improved communication with providers, decrease in travel time, ability to receive expert advice, changes in clinical outcomes, and new forms of cost-effective education. While this initial review is promising, more evidence is needed to support and direct system-level resource investment.

Author List

Hurt K, Walker RJ, Campbell JA, Egede LE

Authors

Jennifer Annette Campbell PhD, MPH Assistant Professor in the Medicine department at Medical College of Wisconsin
Leonard E. Egede MD Center Director, Chief, Professor in the Medicine department at Medical College of Wisconsin
Rebekah Walker PhD Associate Professor in the Medicine department at Medical College of Wisconsin