F-13 Free Communication/Slide - Physical Activity II: JUNE 1, 2007 1:00 PM -2:45 PM ROOM: 236
The U.S. Community Guide (CG) recommendations for physical activity (PA) have not been systematically examined and applied in developing countries such as Brazil.
PURPOSE: To assess the current evidence base concerning interventions to increase PA and develop evidence-based recommendations for PA interventions.
METHODS: A literature review of both peer-reviewed and non-peer-reviewed literature in Portuguese, Spanish, and English was conducted to identify community-based PA interventions in Brazil and Latin America. Ten databases were searched from 1984 to 2006. PA intervention studies were identified using 15 search terms related to PA, fitness, health promotion, and community interventions. All PA-related intervention studies were summarized into literature synthesis tables. Then, six reviewers independently categorized the intervention studies by the CG PA intervention categories and screened the studies for inclusion in a systematic abstraction process to assess the strength of the evidence.
RESULTS: Of the 3,510 articles resulting from the literature search, 18 were selected for full abstraction. These studies fell under the following CG intervention categories, as well as three newly created intervention categories (*) that were not used in the U.S. review: Environmental and policy approaches to increase PA [community-wide policies and planning* (n=1)]; informational approaches to increase PA [community-wide campaigns (n=1), point-of-decision prompts (n=1), classroom-based health education (n=3), delivery of short physical activity-related messages* (n=1)]; and behavioral and social approaches to increase PA [school-based physical education (n=5), social support programs (n=2), PA classes* (n=4)]. Assessment of the strength of the evidence for each intervention category revealed that school-based physical education classes was the only intervention with sufficient evidence for a recommendation from Latin America.
CONCLUSION: This systematic review identified very few published studies about community-based PA interventions in Latin America. Our results suggest that evaluating promising PA interventions, such as community-wide campaigns and community PA classes is a high priority for advancing evidence-based public health practice in Latin America.