The Reporting of Fidelity Measures in Primary Prevention Programmes for Eating Disorders in Schools

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The aim of this paper was to examine the extent to which controlled trials of face-to-face school-based primary prevention for eating disorders report their strategies for maintaining fidelity.


A systematic review located 38 articles eligible for inclusion. These studies were assessed using 18 criteria for reporting fidelity maintenance strategies based on those recommended by the Treatment Fidelity Workgroup of the National Institute of Health Behavior Change Consortium.


Fidelity reporting was generally poor. The studies reported between 22% and 56% of fidelity criteria. Detailed reporting of curriculum-as-usual control conditions was generally lacking, as were methods to ensure high-quality training and mechanisms to assess provider adherence to intervention protocol.


Poor fidelity assessment and reporting is a problem in school-based primary prevention programmes for eating disorders. Recommendations for improving fidelity maintenance and reporting practices are provided. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and Eating Disorders Association.

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