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Using a Systematic Literature Review to Assess the Utility of Mobile Applications in Disaster Health Settings

By: , & Published: 2020 | Product: SAGE Research Methods Cases: Medicine and Health
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Systematic literature reviews are used to develop an understanding of the current state of a field and to identify gaps in the literature that can be opportunities for future examination. However, there are multiple considerations to work through on any systematic review. The following case study focuses on a systematic literature review I conducted on the use of smartphone applications in disaster health learning. This case study provides an introduction and overview of the steps involved in conducting a systematic literature review. These steps include selecting search engines, identifying and refining a keywords list, developing inclusion and exclusion criteria, and using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses framework in our article search and synthesis. In particular, the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses framework allowed us to document our search progress in a standardized, academically acceptable way. This is crucial, as it allows for a replication of the literature review in the future. In addition, there is a discussion of the obstacles that were encountered during this literature review, as well as how we best resolved each obstacle. Notably, I discovered that one of the most important resources was time; conducting a review includes reading and re-reading multiple articles and documenting the most relevant content, which was very time-intensive. Overall, the systematic literature review method is a cost-effective way to gain a better understanding of a scientific field and worked very well for our purposes.

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