Title: The use of games for controlling diabetes and obesity in Chicago's South Side

Authors: Nilmini Wickramasinghe

Addresses: Swinburne University of Technology, 1 John St., Hawthorn, 3122, Australia; Epworth HealthCare, 185-187 Hoddle St., Richmond, 3121, Australia

Abstract: Lower socio-economic groups of populations are sadly over represented with respect to diabetes and obesity. Moreover, current attempts to stem such increases have not proved to be successful which leads to the onset of a further set of co-morbidities, poor health and often early death. This paper proffers the potential of serious games that invoke social influence dynamics and are developed around culturally and socially relevant contexts as a way to address this growing problem. This paper begins with a brief review of how serious games can be used as an effective learning and communication medium as well as outlining the benefits of social influence before applying the constructs to an urban health (Chicago) context. The paper demonstrates how, in this context, games can be used as a pedagogical tool to foster superior learning and understanding. Playing games or using other simulation-oriented applications can offer a visual portrayal of situations, from which this population can garner understanding and applicability to clinical constructs and knowledge.

Keywords: diabetes; obesity; serious games; health inequality; urban health; gaming.

DOI: 10.1504/IJTMCP.2020.104892

International Journal of Telemedicine and Clinical Practices, 2020 Vol.3 No.3, pp.179 - 191

Available online: 31 Jan 2020 *

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