Introduction: Over the past decade there has been a marked growth in the use of linked population administrative data for child protection research. This is the first systematic review of studies to report on research design and statistical methods used where population-based administrative data is integrated with longitudinal data in child protection settings. Methods: The systematic review was conducted according to Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Review and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) statement. The electronic databases Medline (Ovid), PsycINFO, Embase, ERIC, and CINAHL were systematically searched in November 2019 to identify all the relevant studies. The protocol for this review was registered and published with Open Science Framework (Registration DOI: 10.17605/OSF.IO/96PX8) Results: The review identified 30 studies reporting on child maltreatment, mental health, drug and alcohol abuse and education. The quality of almost all studies was strong, however the studies rated poorly on the reporting of data linkage methods. The statistical analysis methods described failed to take into account mediating factors which may have an indirect effect on the outcomes of interest and there was lack of utilisation of multi-level analysis. Conclusion: We recommend reporting of data linkage processes through following recommended and standardised data linkage processes, which can be achieved through greater co-ordination among data providers and researchers.
|Number of pages||41|
|Publication status||Published - 24 Mar 2021|