Protocol for systematic review of school-based interventions to prevent and control obesity in African learners
De Villiers, Anniza
Kengne, Andre Pascal
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INTRODUCTION: The increasing prevalence of obesity and overweight in childhood in developing countries is a public health concern to many governments. Schools play a significant role in the obesity epidemic as well as provide favourable environments for change in behaviours in childhood which can be carried on into adulthood. There is dearth of information on intervention studies in poor-resource settings. This review will summarise the available evidence on school-based interventions that focused on promoting healthy eating and physical activity among learners aged 6–15 years in Africa and to identify factors that lead to successful interventions or potential barriers to success of these programmes within the African context. METHODS AND ANALYSIS: This protocol is developed following the guidelines of PRIMSA-P 2015. Relevant search terms and keywords generated from the subject headings and the African search filter will be used to conduct a comprehensive search of MEDLINE (PubMed), MEDLINE (EbscoHost), CINAHL (EbscoHost), Register Academic Search Complete (EbscoHost) and ISI Web of Science (Science Citation Index) for published literature on school-based interventions to prevent and control obesity in learners in Africa. Grey literature will be also be obtained. The searches will cover 1 January 2000 to 30 June 2016. No language limitations will be applied. Full-text articles of eligible studies will be screened. Risk of bias and quality of reporting will be assessed. Data will be extracted, synthesised and presented by country and major regional groupings. Meta-analysis will be conducted for identical variables across studies, where data allow. This protocol is developed following the guidelines of PRISMA-P 2015. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: No primary data will be collected hence ethics is not a requirement. The findings will be submitted for publication in peerreviewed journals, in conferences and in policy documents for decision-making, where needed.