Published on in Vol 24, No 7 (2022): July

Preprints (earlier versions) of this paper are available at, first published .
Authors’ Reply to: Clarity on the Type of Review. Comment on “Value Cocreation in Health Care: Systematic Review”

Authors’ Reply to: Clarity on the Type of Review. Comment on “Value Cocreation in Health Care: Systematic Review”

Authors’ Reply to: Clarity on the Type of Review. Comment on “Value Cocreation in Health Care: Systematic Review”

Authors of this article:

Yuxin Peng1 Author Orcid Image ;   Tailai Wu1 Author Orcid Image ;   Zhuo Chen2, 3 Author Orcid Image ;   Zhaohua Deng4 Author Orcid Image

Letter to the Editor

1School of Medicine and Health Management, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, China

2Department of Health Policy and Management, College of Public Health, University of Georgia, Athens, GA, United States

3School of Economics, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Nottingham Ningbo China, Ningbo, China

4School of Management, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, China

Corresponding Author:

Tailai Wu, PhD

School of Medicine and Health Management

Tongji Medical College

Huazhong University of Science and Technology

13 Hangkong Road

Qiaokou District

Wuhan, 430030


Phone: 86 13477072665


We thank Kajal [1] and the editors of the Journal of Medical Internet Research for providing this opportunity to discuss our paper [2] with an academic audience directly after the publication of our work.

Overall, we think our systematic review is not perfect, but we endeavor to bring contributions and values to health care knowledge. We believe our audience can find not only the flaws but also the values of our paper. We, along with the reviewers and editors of the Journal of Medical Internet Research, have worked together to make this systematic review as valuable as possible during the publication process; we hope the readers will benefit from it in their future studies.

Our specific responses to Kajal [1] are as follows: First, we believe our study is a systematic review rather than a scoping review since our review not only identified available studies but also identified principal results and areas for future research [3]. The integrative framework provided in our review could serve as the basis for decision-making in value cocreation in health care. We understand that scoping reviews and systematic reviews overlap with each other, but our review matches the methods of a systematic review. Moreover, if the audience read our paper more carefully, they will find that “this area of research is new, and literature is fragmented” is not our only motivation; we also propose other motivations, including “for VCCH, the factors are not explored systematically, underlying mechanisms of its factors are vague, and consequences are not fully investigated” [2]. Finally, we may not have formally proposed a research question in our review, but we did have a specific research aim with the following implied question: What are the dimensions, antecedents, and consequences of value cocreation in health care, and how do they relate?

Second, we think our current search terms are adequate for our review goals. We have tried other search terms related to our research topic, but not many related or qualified articles were found.

Third, the risk of biases and heterogeneity were assessed using the MMAT (Mixed Methods Appraisal Tool). This tool not only appraises the quality of individual studies given the heterogeneity of the study designs but also accounts for many biases including confounding bias, nonresponse bias, and sampling bias [4]. Meanwhile, many previous systematic reviews or systematic review protocols have used the MMAT to assess the risk of bias, such as Xu et al [5], Pearson et al [6], and Gledhill et al [7].

Forth, we admit that developing and presenting a theoretical framework is not a standard method, but it is our unique way of contributing to knowledge in health care. As you can see in our paper, the framework could (1) map and visualize studies systematically, (2) provide a novel theoretical perspective, (3) and imply many future research directions directly. Regarding these 3 benefits, we believe it is necessary to present this framework even though it is not a standard method.

We hope our response has alleviated the concerns raised by Kajal [1].

Conflicts of Interest

None declared.

  1. Kajal F. Clarity on the Type of Review. Comment on "Value Cocreation in Health Care: Systematic Review". J Med Internet Res 2022 Jun 27;24(7):e38457 [FREE Full text] [CrossRef]
  2. Peng Y, Wu T, Chen Z, Deng Z. Value cocreation in health care: Systematic review. J Med Internet Res 2022 Mar 25;24(3):e33061 [FREE Full text] [CrossRef] [Medline]
  3. Munn Z, Peters MDJ, Stern C, Tufanaru C, McArthur A, Aromataris E. Systematic review or scoping review? Guidance for authors when choosing between a systematic or scoping review approach. BMC Med Res Methodol 2018 Nov 19;18(1):143 [FREE Full text] [CrossRef] [Medline]
  4. Hong QN, Fàbregues S, Bartlett G, Boardman F, Cargo M, Dagenais P, et al. The Mixed Methods Appraisal Tool (MMAT) version 2018 for information professionals and researchers. EFI 2018 Dec 18;34(4):285-291. [CrossRef]
  5. Xu N, Lv A, Li T, Li X, Huang M, Su Y. Experiences of healthcare providers during the coronavirus pandemic and its impact on them: protocol for a mixed-methods systematic review. BMJ Open 2021 Feb 26;11(2):e043686 [FREE Full text] [CrossRef] [Medline]
  6. Pearson SA, Taylor S, Marsden A, Yorke J. Access to systemic anti-cancer therapies for women with secondary breast cancer-protocol for a mixed methods systematic review. Syst Rev 2021 Jul 23;10(1):209 [FREE Full text] [CrossRef] [Medline]
  7. Gledhill A, Forsdyke D, Murray E. Psychological interventions used to reduce sports injuries: a systematic review of real-world effectiveness. Br J Sports Med 2018 Aug;52(15):967-971. [CrossRef] [Medline]

MMAT: Mixed Method Appraisal Tool

Edited by T Leung; This is a non–peer-reviewed article. submitted 09.05.22; accepted 24.05.22; published 11.07.22


©Yuxin Peng, Tailai Wu, Zhuo Chen, Zhaohua Deng. Originally published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research (, 11.07.2022.

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