Guidance relevant to the reporting of health equity in observational research: A scoping review protocol

Anita Rizvi, Daeria O. Lawson, Taryn Young, Omar Dewidar, Stuart Nicholls, Elie A. Akl, Julian Little, Olivia Magwood, Larissa Shamseer, Elizabeth Ghogomu, Janet Elizabeth Jull, Tamara Rader, Zulfiqar Bhutta, Catherine Chamberlain, Holly Ellingwood, Regina Greer-Smith, Billie Jo Hardy, Matire Harwood, Michelle Kennedy, Tamara KredoElizabeth Loder, Michael Johnson J. Mahande, Lawrence Mbuagbaw, Miriam Nkangu, Patrick M. Okwen, Jacqueline Ramke, Janice Tufte, Peter Tugwell, Xiaoqin Wang, Charles Shey Wiysonge, Vivian A. Welch

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction Health inequities are defined as unfair and avoidable differences in health between groups within a population. Most health research is conducted through observational studies, which are able to offer real-world insights about etiology, healthcare policy/programme effectiveness and the impacts of socioeconomic factors. However, most published reports of observational studies do not address how their findings relate to health equity. Our team seeks to develop equity-relevant reporting guidance as an extension of the Strengthening the Reporting of Observational Studies in Epidemiology (STROBE) statement. This scoping review will inform the development of candidate items for the STROBE-Equity extension. We will operationalise equity-seeking populations using the PROGRESS-Plus framework of sociodemographic factors. As part of a parallel stream of the STROBE-Equity project, the relevance of candidate guideline items to Indigenous research will be led by Indigenous coinvestigators on the team. Methods and analysis We will follow the Joanna Briggs Institute method for conducting scoping reviews. We will evaluate the extent to which the identified guidance supports or refutes our preliminary candidate items for reporting equity in observational studies. These candidate items were developed based on items from equity-reporting guidelines for randomised trials and systematic reviews, developed by members of this team. We will consult with our knowledge users, patients/public partners and Indigenous research steering committee to invite suggestions for relevant guidance documents and interpretation of findings. If the identified guidance suggests the need for additional candidate items, they will be developed through inductive thematic analysis. Ethics and dissemination We will follow a principled approach that promotes ethical codevelopment with our community partners, based on principles of cultural safety, authentic partnerships, addressing colonial structures in knowledge production and the shared ownership, interpretation, and dissemination of research. All products of this research will be published as open access.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere056875
JournalBMJ Open
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 19 May 2022


  • Equity
  • Equity-seeking
  • Guidance
  • Health
  • Indigenous
  • Observational studies
  • Reporting


Dive into the research topics of 'Guidance relevant to the reporting of health equity in observational research: A scoping review protocol'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this