Informed Consent: Research Staff’s Perspectives and Practical Recommendations to Improve Research Staff-Participant Communication

Informed Consent: Research Staff’s Perspectives and Practical Recommendations to Improve Research Staff-Participant Communication
Delphine Eeckhout, Karolien Aelbrecht, Catherine Van Der Straeten
Journal of Empirical Research on Human Research Ethics, 23 December 2022
Abstract
Informed consent (IC) is the process of communication between research staff and potential research participants. However, ensuring that participants clearly understand what research participation entails, raises significant challenges. The aim of this study is to provide insight into some communication barriers that research staff are confronted with and make practical recommendations to improve communication between research staff and participants. A qualitative research study using semi-structured interviews (n = 13) with research staff from Ghent University Hospital was conducted. Data were transcribed verbatim and coded thematically. Our results indicate that communication- and process-related factors affect the IC process. Emergent recommendations include communication training, more interactive information materials and the use of digital alternatives, increasing general knowledge about research participation and patient- and public involvement.

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