Diversifying the public health evidence-base: How scoping reviews can contribute to progress regarding physical activity inequalities.
ISPAH ePoster Library. Rigby B. Oct 15, 2018; 225084
Mr. Benjamin Rigby
Mr. Benjamin Rigby
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Abstract
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Abstract Introduction:<\b>
Scoping reviews represent an increasing divergence from the hierarchy of evidence which has traditionally informed public health evidence reviews. However, this method has seldom been used in physical activity and inequalities research, due to incumbent policy emphases and a focus on epidemiological study and natural science methods. This paper examines the potential contribution scoping reviews can make to enhance understanding of physical activity and inequalities.Discussion: Drawing from a recent scoping review, which followed Arksey and O’Malley’s protocol to explore equity in outdoor walking group literature, four main benefits are proposed over traditional approaches to evidence synthesis: (1) a rapid yet rigorous process; (2) flexibility amidst emerging evidence; (3) the presentation of available information in a manner reflecting daily decision making; (4) licence to draw upon diverse literatures, which may aid connections between physical activity and health inequalities to be drawn. Acknowledging some of the limitations of scoping reviews, a series of recommendations are posed, including stakeholder involvement in knowledge production, translation and dissemination. Guidance for practitioners seeking to utilise such evidence to inform intervention is provided. Conclusion:<\b>
Scoping reviews which follow an explicit methodological framework can provide expeditious evidence for public health use, notably in understanding how physical activity can address inequalities. Continued reflection upon scoping review use will enhance their rigour and strengthen their applicability to research and practice alike. External funding details ESRC/Wolfson Research Institute (Durham, UK).
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