Patients' Attitudes and Preferences About Participation and Recruitment Strategies in Clinical Trials

Division of General Internal Medicine, Mayo Clinic, 200 First St SW, Rochester, MN 55905, USA.
Mayo Clinic Proceedings (Impact Factor: 6.26). 04/2009; 84(3):243-7. DOI: 10.1016/S0025-6196(11)61141-5
Source: PubMed


To assess attitudes of patients about participation in clinical trials.
This is a self-report survey of 400 patients who underwent general medical evaluations between September and November 2006 at a tertiary care academic medical center in Rochester, MN. We measured knowledge of access to clinical trials, attitudes toward participation, recruitment preferences, and beliefs about research integrity.
Of 485 consecutive patients, 400 (82%) completed the survey. Previous participation in clinical trials was reported by 112 patients (28%). Most were unaware of online information about clinical trials (330 [82%]), were satisfied with their current knowledge (233 [58%]), expected their treating physician to inform them about current trials (304 [76%]), and showed equal interest in participating in conventional or complementary intervention trials (174 [44%]). Of the 400 respondents, 321 (80%) found it appropriate to be contacted by mail and 253 (63%) by telephone regarding study participation. Most patients (364 [91%]) wanted to be informed about research findings or else would not participate in future clinical trials (272 [68%]). The most frequently expected compensation was free parking (234 [58%]). Most thought that their safety (373 [93%]) and privacy (376 [94%]) would be guarded.
Patients are interested in participating in clinical trials but commonly lack adequate information. If patients received more information (through their treating physicians), enrollment might improve. This single-site study has limited generalizability. Future studies involving a diverse group of patients from a broader geographic distribution will help provide more definitive results.

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    • "International studies have shown that the regulatory setting of many clinical trials is a deterrent to participation, with the emphasis on written consent, closed questions and form filling (Sood et al, 2009). Elements of the research process have been found to be disrespectful by some, for example, where the mother tongue is predominantly a spoken language being required to sign a consent form may imply a lack of trust in one's word (Sheikh, 2006). "
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