Published: 2021-07-27

Health messaging with Viber application on risk factors of non-communicable diseases among the rural population: community-based quasi-experimental study

Swe Mar Myint Lwin, Khaing Lay Mon, Aung Soe Htet


Background: Mobile health and mobile phone technology have become increasingly noticed as favorable communication channels for the prevention of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) by reducing the unhealthy behaviors of NCDs. The study was carried out to assess the effect of the health messaging with the Viber application on modifiable risk factors of NCDs.

Methods: A community-based quasi-experimental study was conducted among a total of 240 community members who were 30 to 60 years old selected from two villages in Twantay township with a one year intervention. Face-to-face interviews with all participants using the WHO STEP survey questionnaire and measurements of behavioral and metabolic risk factors of NCDs were carried out at baseline and after 12 months follow up. Changes in behavior and metabolic risk factors between the intervention and control group were analyzed using mixed-effects random-intercept linear regression modeling with propensity score adjustment. Because of the small sample in smoking, smokeless tobacco and alcohol users, the Wilcoxon rank-sum (Mann-Whitney) test was used to compare the changes between the two groups.

Results: The amount of smoking and smokeless tobacco use among current users in the intervention group was reduced after the intervention (p<0.05). Of metabolic risk factors, participants in the intervention group had a significant net reduction in fasting blood sugar with a mean change relative to controls of -18.7 mg/dl 95% CI (-32.83, -4.56, p=0.010). No significant mean reduction was seen in other behavioral or metabolic risk factors.

Conclusions: The study results showed that intervention affected a reduction in some behavioral and metabolic risk factors of NCDs.


Health messaging, Viber application, Risk factors of NCDs

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