BACKGROUND: Service user and stakeholder engagement have been widely considered as key aspects in translating knowledge into realistic policies and practices. However, there is a paucity of accumulative evidence about service user and stakeholder engagements in maternal and newborn health (MNH) research in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). Therefore, we aim to systematically review the existing literature that includes service user and stakeholder engagement in maternal and newborn health research in low- and middle-income countries.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: The design of this protocol is guided by the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analysis (PRISMA-P) checklist. We will systematically run the search in PubMed/MEDLINE, PsycINFO, Scopus, Science Direct, and CINAHL to obtain relevant peer-reviewed literature published between January 1990 and March 2023. The list of extracted references will be screened by applying the study inclusion criteria, and eligible studies will be processed for further evaluation before being included in the review. The quality of the selected study will be assessed using the critical appraisal skills program (CASP) checklists and the Mixed Method Appraisal Tool (MMAT) checklist. A narrative synthesis will be used to synthesised results from all the included studies.
DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSION: To the best of our knowledge, this systematic review will be the first synthesised evidence on service user and stakeholder engagement in maternal and newborn health research in low- and middle-income countries. The study highlights the importance of service user and stakeholder roles in designing, implementing, and evaluating maternal and newborn health interventions in resource-poor settings. The evidence from this review is expected to be useful for national and international researchers/stakeholders for practising meaningful and effective ways of engaging users and stakeholders in maternal and newborn health research and related activities. The PROSPERO registration number is CRD42022314613.