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A RE-AIM evaluation of evidence-based multi-level interventions to improve obesity-related behaviours in adults: a systematic review (the SPOTLIGHT project)

06 Dec 2014

Background:
This systematic literature review describes the potential public health impact of evidence-based multi-level interventions to improve obesity-related behaviours in adults, using the Reach, Efficacy, Adoption, Implementation and Maintenance (RE-AIM) framework.
Methods:
Electronic databases (PubMed, Embase, and The Cochrane Library) were searched to identify intervention studies published between January 2000 and October 2013. The following inclusion criteria were used: (1) the study included at least one outcome measure assessing obesity-related behaviours (i.e. diet, physical activity or sedentary behaviour), (2) the study collected data over at least one year and (3) the study?s intervention targeted adults, was conducted in a specified geographical area or worksite, and was multi-level (i.e. targeting both individual and environmental level). Evidence of RE-AIM of the selected interventions was assessed. Potential public health impact of an intervention was evaluated if information was provided on at least four of the five RE-AIM dimensions.
Results:
Thirty-five multi-level interventions met the inclusion criteria. RE-AIM evaluation revealed that the included interventions generally had the potential to: reach a large number of people (on average 58% of the target population was aware of the intervention); achieve the assumed goals (89% found positive outcomes); be broadly adopted (the proportion of intervention deliverers varied from 9% to 92%) and be sustained (sixteen interventions were maintained). The highest potential public health impact was found in multi-level interventions that: 1) focused on all levels at the beginning of the planning process, 2) guided the implementation process using diffusion theory, and 3) used a website to disseminate the intervention.
Conclusions:
Although most studies underreported results within the RE-AIM dimensions, the reported Reach, Effectiveness, Adoption, Implementation and Maintenance were positively evaluated. However, more information on external validity and sustainability is needed in order to take informed decisions on the choice of interventions that should be implemented in real-world settings to accomplish long-term changes in obesity-related behaviours.

Click here to view the full article which appeared in International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity

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