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Using a scoping review to identify promising gender-sensitive health promotion interventions for women

Date and Location




Presenting author and contact person

Presenting author

Ann Pederson

Contact person

Anna Liwander
Abstract text
Background: Gender, as a social determinant of health, affects an individual’s health and social outcomes. Initiated within the field of HIV/AIDS, gender-sensitive health promotion interventions (GSHPI) are programs and policies designed to address gender-related health and social inequities among and between women and men. It is important to develop methods for incorporating the analysis of sex and gender within scoping reviews and to explore how gender-sensitive elements are being incorporated in current health promotion interventions to identify promising practices. Objectives: Conduct a scoping review to identify promising GSHPI for women in the fields of tobacco, alcohol, physical activity and sedentary behaviour, and assess the extent to which they have considered sex, gender, diversity and equity. Methods: A systematic search was conducted in 47 bibliographic databases and 16 websites for studies published between 2001-2012 that (1) explicitly targeted girls and/or women; (2) incorporated an understanding of sex and/or gender; (3) engaged with the determinants of women’s health; and (4) sought to reduce gender-related social and health inequities. The method was enhanced through consultations with key stakeholders to guide the overall review process and to verify our preliminary results. Results: The scoping review helped identify and categorize a large volume of academic and grey literature and allowed for categorization of findings to explore how the interventions considered sex, gender, diversity and equity. The review also highlighted gaps in the existing literature and our results suggest that few interventions met the criteria for gender-sensitive interventions. Conclusions: Findings highlight gender-sensitive features of health promotion interventions in tobacco, alcohol, physical activity and sedentary behaviour, including how gender roles may affect health behaviours. However, current literature is only at the early stages of documenting GSHPI and enhanced methods are required to further define and measure GSHPI.