OBJECTIVE: To investigate the completeness of reporting of behavioural, environmental, social and system interventions (BESSI) for reducing the transmission of SARS-CoV-2 evaluated in randomised trials, to obtain missing intervention details and to document the interventions assessed.
STUDY DESIGN AND SETTING: We assessed completeness of reporting in randomised trials of BESSI using the Template for Intervention Description and Replication (TIDieR) checklist. Investigators were contacted to provide missing intervention details and if provided, intervention descriptions were reassessed and documented according to the TIDieR items.
RESULTS: Forty-five trials (planned or complete) describing 21 educational interventions, 15 protective measures and 9 social distancing interventions were included. In 30 trials with a protocol or study report, 30% (9/30) of interventions were completely described; this increased to 53% (16/30) after contacting 24 trial investigators (11 responded). Across all interventions, intervention provider training (35%) was the most frequently incompletely described checklist item, followed by the 'when and how much' intervention item.
CONCLUSION: Incomplete reporting of BESSI is a substantial problem, with essential information necessary for implementation of interventions and for building on existing knowledge frequently missing and unable to be obtained. Such reporting is an avoidable source of research waste.