Background Burn injuries are common in young children, and one of the leading causes is hot beverage scalds. Innovative new technologies such as Smartphone applications (apps) present a novel way for delivering individual-level behaviour change messages. When combined with gamification (using game techniques in a non-game context), app-based interventions can engage and influence people’s beliefs, attitudes and behaviours. Gamification has not been applied to injury prevention. The aim of this study was to develop a gamified app-based intervention to prevent hot beverage scalds in young children.
Methods Randomised control trial. Participants recruited online via targeted social media advertisements. Inclusion criteria: mothers aged 18+ with at least one child aged 5–12 months at time of recruitment, who own a Smartphone, and live in Queensland, Australia. Both groups complete a pre-test questionnaire to determine knowledge of hot beverage scald risks and burn first aid knowledge. Participants in the intervention group receive fortnightly messages (infographic or video) about hot drink scald risk factors and burn first aid treatment, and are incentivised with points and rewards/prizes. The control group receive three burn/first aid infographics without incentives. After intervention period participants from both groups complete a post-test questionnaire.
Results The six-month intervention period will finish in July 2016. The anticipated sample size is 480 (240 intervention/240 control). Intervention effectiveness will be assessed using regression models adjusting for baseline values. Preliminary results will be presented.
Conclusions Given the success of gamified app-based interventions for chronic disease management, smoking cessation, and physical activity, it is hoped this novel approach to injury prevention will be equally successful. The low cost, scalability and broad reach make this approach an ideal channel for future injury prevention efforts.
- Injury prevention
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