Quality Assessment Criteria for Mobile Health Apps: A Systematic Review
Keywords:Assessment, Systematic review, Mobile health apps, Quality, mHealth
Summative evidences on the criteria for user assessment of health apps are still limited. In order to determine an assessment method for mobile health apps, rigorous and appropriate criteria must be chosen. The aim of this study is to review the existing quality assessment criteria that are being used to assess the quality of mobile health apps focusing on users’ perspectives. In addition, a procedure for the quality assessment of health apps is also presented.
A systematic review was conducted utilizing 5 databases; PubMed, ScienceDirect, Scopus, CENTRAL and IEEE Xplore from 2008 to 2017. Search terms were; “mHealth”, “Applications”, “iOS OR Android”, “smartphones”, “quality”, etc. Papers that assessed the quality of health apps by users were selected. The PRISMA guideline was followed to complete the list of final studies. Likewise, a data extraction form was based on the PICO framework. From 6,514 studies, 69 studies met the eligibility criteria. Four hundred and forty-one quality assessment criteria for users were classified into 15 domains: Ease of use, Usability, Aesthetics, Connectivity, Functionality, Information, User satisfaction, Acceptability, Error occurrence, Motivation, Engagement, Data management, Undesirable events, Credentials and Security and privacy. An “ease of use” domain was found common in the included studies. The 15 domains were suggested as criteria for further study of the quality assessment and development of mHealth apps. Moreover, five recommended steps were presented for future research of quality of mobile health apps.
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