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Early intervention, and parent-mediated intervention are effective in achieving early childhood development goals for children with autism spectrum disorder. There is a surge in mHealth technologies delivering such interventions. This review aims to explore the concept, context and methodology of implementation of such mHealth apps. Doen by Geniuslane Research Team. Rahul Bharat, Uzaina, Tribhuvanesh Yadav, Sanjay Niranjan & Palomi Kurade

mHealth Apps Delivering Early Intervention to Support Parents of Children With ASD: Scoping Review

Project type

Project type

Date

20 February 2023

Location

Indian Pediatrics, Springer

Full Review Link

Context
Early intervention, and parent-mediated intervention are effective in achieving early childhood development goals for children with autism spectrum disorder. There is a surge in mHealth technologies delivering such interventions. This review aims to explore the concept, context and methodology of implementation of such mHealth apps.

Evidence Acquisition
A search was conducted using NICE (National Institute of Clinical Excellence) healthcare database, including keyword ‘early intervention,’ ‘mHealth,’ ‘parent support,’ ‘apps,’ and ‘autism.’ The quantitative, qualitative, mixed-methods, case reports, grey literature, systematic reviews, clinical trials, and feasibility studies of children between 2 to 6 years with ASD were included from inception of database to December, 2021. Web/Internet-based or computer-dependent programs were excluded. The initial search yielded 3786 studies; 17 were finally included based on the inclusion and exclusion criteria.

Result
Studies on a total of mhealth apps were reviewed. Nine apps, apart from TOBY (Therapy outcome by you), lacked a holistic approach and instead targeted a specific difficulty in autism. The provision of support to parents using apps was equally beneficial as in-person support, reduced costs, and improved outcomes in children.

Conclusion
The review revealed limited evidence-based mHealth apps available currently in a community setting. This also underscores an opportunity for clinicians to re-direct parents towards evidence-based information and interventions.

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