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Results for 'systematic reviews'

Results 1 - 8 of 8

Effectiveness of befriending interventions: a systematic review and meta-analysis


Objective: Befriending is an emotional supportive relationship in which one-to-one companionship is provided on a regular basis by a volunteer. It is commonly and increasingly offered by the voluntary sector for individuals with distressing physical and mental conditions. However, the effectiveness of this intervention on health outcomes is largely unknown. This systematic review examines the benefits of befriending. Design: Systematic review Methods: A systematic search of electronic databases was conducted to identify randomised controlled trials and quasi-experimental trials of befriending for a range of physical and mental health indications including depression, anxiety, mental illness, cancer, physical illness and dementia. Main outcomes included patient-relevant and disease-specific outcomes, such as depression, loneliness, quality of life, self-esteem, social support and well-being. Results: A total of 14 trials (2411 participants) were included; 7 were judged at low risk of bias. Most trials showed improvement in symptoms associated with befriending but these associations did not reach statistical significance in all trials. Befriending was significantly associated with better patient-reported outcomes across primary measures. However, there was no significant benefit on single outcomes, including depression, quality of life, loneliness ratings, self-esteem measures, social support structures and well-being. Conclusions: There was moderate quality evidence to support the use of befriending for the treatment of individuals with different physical and mental health conditions. This evidence refers to an overall improvement benefit in patient-reported primary outcomes, although with a rather small effect size. The current evidence base does not allow for firm conclusions on more specific outcomes. Future trials should hypothesise a model for the precise effects of befriending and use specified inclusion and outcome criteria.

Physical activity interventions for treatment of social isolation, loneliness or low social support in older adults: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials

SHVEDKO Anastasia, et al

Objectives: This article reviews the effects of physical activity (PA) interventions on social isolation, loneliness or low social support in older adults. Design: Systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials (RCTs). Method: MEDLINE, EMBASE, PsycINFO, the Cochrane CENTRAL, CINAHL, were screened up to February 2017. RCTs comparing PA versus non-PA interventions or control (sedentary) condition were included. Risk of bias was assessed using the 12 criteria Cochrane Review Book Group risk of bias. The outcome measures were: social isolation, loneliness, social support, social networks, and social functioning. Standardised mean differences (SMDs) with associated 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated for continuous outcomes. Meta-analysis was performed using a random effects model. Results: The search strategy identified 38 RCTs, with a total of 5288 participants, of which 26 had a low risk of bias and 12 had a high risk of bias. Meta-analysis was performed on 23 RCTs. A small significant positive effect favouring the experimental condition was found for social functioning with strongest effects obtained for PA interventions, diseased populations, group exercise setting, and delivery by a medical healthcare provider. No effect of PA was found for loneliness, social support, or social networks. Conclusion: This review shows, for social functioning, the specific aspects of PA interventions can successfully influence social health. PA did not appear to be effective for loneliness, social support and social networks.

The effectiveness of e-interventions on reducing social isolation in older persons: a systematic review of systematic reviews

CHIPPS Jennifer, JARVIS Mary Ann, RAMIALL Suvira

As the older adult population group has been increasing in size, there has been evidence of growing social isolation and loneliness in their lives. The increased use of information communication technology and Internet-supported interventions has stimulated an interest in the benefits of e-Interventions for older people and specifically in having a role in increasing social networks and decreasing loneliness. A systematic review of e-Interventions to reduce loneliness in older people was conducted with the aim to synthesize high quality evidence on the effectiveness of e-Interventions to decrease social isolation/loneliness for older people living in community/residential care. A systematic search of 12 databases for reviews published between 2000–2017 was conducted using search term synonyms for older people, social isolation and interventions. Three independent researchers screened articles and two reviewers extracted data. The Revised-Assessment of Multiple Systematic Reviews was used to assess the quality of reviews. The final search identified 12 reviews, which included 22 unique primary research studies evaluating e-Interventions for social isolation or loneliness. The reviews were of moderate quality and the primary studies showed a lack of rigor. Loneliness was most frequently measured using the University California Los Angeles Loneliness Scale. Despite the limitations of the reviewed studies, there is inconsistent and weak evidence on using e-Interventions for loneliness in older people.

Social prescribing: less rhetoric and more reality. A systematic review of the evidence


Objectives: Social prescribing is a way of linking patients in primary care with sources of support within the community to help improve their health and well-being. Social prescribing programmes are being widely promoted and adopted in the UK National Health Service and this systematic review aims to assess the evidence for their effectiveness. Setting/data sources: Nine databases were searched from 2000 to January 2016 for studies conducted in the UK. Relevant reports and guidelines, websites and reference lists of retrieved articles were scanned to identify additional studies. All the searches were restricted to English language only. Participants: Systematic reviews and any published evaluation of programmes where patient referral was made from a primary care setting to a link worker or facilitator of social prescribing were eligible for inclusion. Risk of bias for included studies was undertaken independently by two reviewers and a narrative synthesis was performed. Primary and secondary outcome measures: Primary outcomes of interest were any measures of health and well-being and/or usage of health services. Results: A total of 15 evaluations of social prescribing programmes were included. Most were small scale and limited by poor design and reporting. All were rated as a having a high risk of bias. Common design issues included a lack of comparative controls, short follow-up durations, a lack of standardised and validated measuring tools, missing data and a failure to consider potential confounding factors. Despite clear methodological shortcomings, most evaluations presented positive conclusions. Conclusions: Social prescribing is being widely advocated and implemented but current evidence fails to provide sufficient detail to judge either success or value for money. If social prescribing is to realise its potential, future evaluations must be comparative by design and consider when, by whom, for whom, how well and at what cost.

Making the case for investing in actions to prevent and/or tackle loneliness: a systematic review. A briefing paper

MCDAID David, BAUER Annette, PARK A-La

Summarises findings from a systematic review on the available economic evidence on the cost effectiveness of loneliness interventions for older people. The review found mixed evidence for the cost effectiveness of befriending interventions and the benefits of participation in social activities, ranging from cost saving to cost ineffective interventions. Recent evidence identified suggests that signposting and navigation services have the potential to be cost effective, with a saving of up to £3 of health costs for every £1 invested. The paper also makes suggestions for strengthening the evidence based on the cost effectiveness of interventions to address loneliness.

Does integrated care reduce hospital activity for patients with chronic diseases? An umbrella review of systematic reviews


Objective: To summarise the evidence regarding the effectiveness of integrated care interventions in reducing hospital activity. Design: Umbrella review of systematic reviews and meta-analyses. Setting: Interventions must have delivered care crossing the boundary between at least two health and/or social care settings. Participants: Adult patients with one or more chronic diseases. Data sources: MEDLINE, Embase, ASSIA, PsycINFO, HMIC, CINAHL, Cochrane Library (HTA database,DARE, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews), EPPI-Centre, TRIP, HEED, manual screening of references. Outcome measures: Any measure of hospital admission or readmission, length of stay (LoS), accident and emergency use, healthcare costs. Results: 50 reviews were included. Interventions focused on case management (n=8), chronic care model (CCM) (n=9), discharge management (n=15), complex interventions (n=3), multidisciplinary teams (MDT) (n=10) and self-management (n=5). 29 reviews reported statistically significant improvements in at least one outcome. 11/21 reviews reported significantly reduced emergency admissions (15–50%); 11/24 showed significant reductions in all-cause (10–30%) or condition-specific (15–50%) readmissions; 9/16 reported LoS reductions of 1–7 days and 4/9 showed significantly lower A&E use (30–40%). 10/25 reviews reported significant cost reductions but provided little robust evidence. Effective interventions included discharge management with post-discharge support, MDT care with teams that include condition-specific expertise, specialist nurses and/or pharmacists and self-management as an adjunct to broader interventions. Interventions were most effective when targeting single conditions such as heart failure, and when care was provided in patients’ homes. Conclusions: Although all outcomes showed some significant reductions, and a number of potentially effective interventions were found, interventions rarely demonstrated unequivocally positive effects. Despite the centrality of integrated care to current policy, questions remain about whether the magnitude of potentially achievable gains is enough to satisfy national targets for reductions in hospital activity.

Supporting self-management: summarising evidence from systematic reviews


This booklet sets out research findings of the benefits of supporting people to self-manage. It also sets out the evidence for the impact of self-management education for patients, proactive telephone and psychosocial support, home-based self-monitoring and simplified dosing strategies and information. Self-management includes all the actions taken by people to recognise, treat and manage their own healthcare independently of or in partnership with the healthcare system. People feel more confident and engaged when they are encouraged to self-manage by professionals, therefore supporting self-management is key to prioritising person-centred care. Drawing on the findings from 228 systematic reviews, the paper concludes that the top three things that might most usefully be invested in are disease specific, generic and on-line self-management courses, proactive telephone support and self monitoring of symptoms and vital signs.

Effectiveness and feasibility of virtual reality and gaming system use at home by older adults for enabling physical activity to improve health-related domains: a systematic review

MILLER Kimberly J., et al

Background: Use of virtual reality and commercial gaming systems (VR/gaming) at home by older adults is receiving attention as a means of enabling physical activity. Objective: to summarise evidence for the effectiveness and feasibility of VR/gaming system utilisation by older adults at home for enabling physical activity to improve impairments, activity limitations or participation. Methods: A systematic review searching 12 electronic databases from 1 January 2000–10 July 2012 using key search terms. Two independent reviewers screened yield articles using pre-determined selection criteria, extracted data using customised forms and applied the Cochrane Collaboration Risk of Bias Tool and the Downs and Black Checklist to rate study quality. Results: Fourteen studies investigating the effects of VR/gaming system use by healthy older adults and people with neurological conditions on activity limitations, body functions and physical impairments and cognitive and emotional well-being met the selection criteria. Study quality ratings were low and, therefore, evidence was not strong enough to conclude that interventions were effective. Feasibility was inconsistently reported in studies. Where feasibility was discussed, strong retention (≥70%) and adherence (≥64%) was reported. Initial assistance to use the technologies, and the need for monitoring exertion, aggravation of musculoskeletal symptoms and falls risk were reported. Conclusions: Existing evidence to support the feasibility and effectiveness VR/gaming systems use by older adults at home to enable physical activity to address impairments, activity limitations and participation is weak with a high risk of bias. The findings of this review may inform future, more rigorous research.

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