A scoping review of digital workplace wellness interventions in low- and middle-income countries

Yi Chiann Thai, Deanna Sim, Tracy A. McCaffrey, Amutha Ramadas, Hema Malini, Jessica Watterson

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Introduction - Digital technology-based interventions have gained popularity over the last two decades, due to the ease with which they are scalable and low in implementation cost. Multicomponent health promotion programmes, with significant digital components, are increasingly being deployed in the workplace to assess and promote employees’ health behaviours and reduce risk of chronic diseases. However, little is known about workplace digital health interventions in low- and middle- income countries (LMICs). Methods - Various combinations of keywords related to “digital health”, “intervention”, “workplace” and “developing country” were applied in Ovid MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL Plus, PsycINFO, Scopus and Cochrane Library for peer-reviewed articles in English language. Manual searches were performed to supplement the database search. The screening process was conducted in two phases and a narrative synthesis to summarise the data. The review protocol was written prior to undertaking the review (OSF Registry:10.17605/OSF.IO/QPR9J). Results - The search strategy identified 10,298 publications, of which 24 were included. Included studies employed the following study designs: randomized-controlled trials (RCTs) (n = 12), quasi-experimental (n = 4), pilot studies (n = 4), pre-post studies (n = 2) and cohort studies (n = 2). Most of the studies reported positive feedback of the use of digital wellness interventions in workplace settings. Conclusions - This review is the first to map and describe the impact of digital wellness interventions in the workplace in LMICs. Only a small number of studies met the inclusion criteria. Modest evidence was found that digital workplace wellness interventions were feasible, cost-effective, and acceptable. However, long-term, and consistent effects were not found, and further studies are needed to provide more evidence. This scoping review identified multiple digital health interventions in LMIC workplace settings and highlighted a few important research gaps.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0282118
Number of pages25
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume18
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 28 Feb 2023

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