Public Health Article

Effectiveness of digital health interventions on unintentional injury, violence, and suicide: Meta-analysis

Review Quality Rating: 7 (moderate)

Citation: Chen M, & Chan KL. (2020). Effectiveness of digital health interventions on unintentional injury, violence, and suicide: Meta-analysis. Trauma, Violence & Abuse, 1524838020967346.

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Digital technologies are increasingly used in health-care delivery and are being introduced into work to prevent unintentional injury, violence, and suicide to reduce mortality. To understand the potential of digital health interventions (DHIs) to prevent and reduce these problems, we conduct a meta-analysis and provide an overview of their effectiveness and characteristics related to the effects. We searched electronic databases and reference lists of relevant reviews to identify randomized controlled trials (RCTs) published in or before March 2020 evaluating DHIs on injury, violence, or suicide reduction. Based on the 34 RCT studies included in the meta-analysis, the overall random effect size was 0.21, and the effect sizes for reducing suicidal ideation, interpersonal violence, and unintentional injury were 0.17, 0.24, and 0.31, respectively, which can be regarded as comparable to the effect sizes of traditional face-to-face interventions. However, there was considerable heterogeneity between the studies. In conclusion, DHIs have great potential to reduce unintentional injury, violence, and suicide. Future research should explore DHIs' successful components to facilitate future implementation and wider access.


Adolescents (13-19 years), Adults (20-59 years), Education / Awareness & Skill Development / Training, Injury Prevention/Safety, Internet, Mental Health, Meta-analysis, Mobile Phone, Seniors (60+ years), Social Support (e.g., counseling, case management, outreach programs) , Worksite

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