Table 1

The formal literature search

InterventionSafety-netting advice given for symptoms where a diagnosis is not immediately apparent or illness is initially suspected to be self-limiting, risk communication.
SettingAny healthcare setting where discharge advice is given, any setting where health risk is communicated, for example, public health messaging during a pandemic.
ParticipantsAny healthcare professional.
Adult patients (≥18 years) of any gender, ethnicity or other demographic group.
Adult carers or family members (≥18 years) of patients unable to take responsibility for their own care, for example, children or patients with developmental disorders, of any gender, ethnicity or other demographic group.
Study designAll study designs except case reports.
OutcomeAny outcome related to the understanding of the safety-netting advice or risk communication, or ability of the patient or carer to self-care when appropriate and reconsult when necessary.
Limits1987–present. No limits on place or language of publication were used.
Databases searchedMedline, Embase, Health Management Information Consortium, Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature, PsychINFO. Targeted Google searches of charitable, professional and government bodies.