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Evaluation of COVID-19 m-Health apps: An analysis of the methods of app usability testing during a global pandemic

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posted on 2024-01-22, 17:05 authored by HR Saeidnia, M Kozak, M Ausloos, BD Lund, A Ghorbi, Z Mohammadzadeh
Purpose: As the COVID-19 outbreak expanded over the world, governments looked for smartphone-based technological solutions to reduce the disease's dangers and prevent it. Most leading governments initially sought to use new smartphone-based applications (apps). In this study, we review articles that have evaluated these official government apps. The objective of this review is to answer the following question: “In evaluating or analyzing governmental apps for COVID-19, which methods have researchers used?”. Methods: This study reviews existing scholarly literature, to identify and analyze the investigations into the usability evaluation of official (governmental) mobile apps developed in the COVID-19 era. Study parameters specified that articles must be originally published in peer-reviewed journals or short articles, written in English, and must be published between 2019 and 2022 and indexed in PubMed, OVID, EMBASE, Web of Science, and Scopus. Additionally, the articles had to analyze and evaluate at least one mobile app that was launched and/or supported by a government. Reports, letters to the editor, review articles, and meta-analyses were excluded; also excluded were articles processing non-governmental apps. Results: 11 studies were identified that met the inclusion criteria. These studies evaluate a total of 40 governmental, “official”, mobile apps, developed in 41 countries from the five continents. This study finds that the heuristic method, thematic analysis, and comparative analysis are the most popular research methods used for evaluating or analyzing governmental apps for COVID-19. Conclusion: This review of articles developed by various governments to combat COVID-19 leads the authors to conclude that most researchers sought to emphasize the strengths of these apps as opposed to limitations. Based on this review, we find that existing literature can sufficiently cover the effectiveness of these mobile apps.

History

Author affiliation

School of Business, University of Leicester

Version

  • VoR (Version of Record)

Published in

Informatics in Medicine Unlocked

Volume

41

Pagination

101310

Publisher

Elsevier BV

issn

2352-9148

Copyright date

2023

Available date

2024-01-22

Language

en

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