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School bullying prevention and intervention strategies in the United Arab Emirates: a scoping review.

INTRODUCTION: Schools in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) witnessed an increase of 7% in bullying prevalence since 2005. This review aimed to map antibullying interventions in the UAE.

METHODS: A systematic search was performed in five electronic databases (EMBASE, PubMed, PsycINFO, Scopus and Eric) using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses extension for Scoping Review. Studies addressing antibullying interventions and grey literature in the UAE from 2010 to 2021 were included. Interventions were mapped using distribution across key sectors, public health practice levels, and organisation types.

RESULTS: Of the 2122 identified papers, only 2 were included. Both articles were published in 2019 and used qualitative methods. From the search of governmental and non-governmental websites, 22 multilevel interventions were included and presented on the three levels of public health practice across the different sectors and target stakeholders. Eight interventions were at the federal level, and six were by private stakeholders. The government funded 59% of all interventions. Four interventions addressed cyberbullying, and three used multisectoral collaboration.

CONCLUSIONS: Although the UAE is building capacity for bullying prevention, we found limited knowledge of antibullying prevention efforts. Further studies are needed to assess current interventions, strategies and policies.

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