Participants’ perspectives and preferences on clinical trial result dissemination: The TRUST Thyroid Trial experience

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Racine, Emmy 
Hurley, Caroline 
Cheung, Aoife 
Kearney, Patricia 

Background: While there is an increasing consensus that clinical trial results should be shared with trial participants, there is a lack of evidence on the most appropriate methods. The aim of this study is to use a patient and public involvement (PPI) approach to identify, develop and evaluate a patient-preferred method of receiving results of the Thyroid Hormone Replacement for Subclinical Hypo-Thyroidism Trial (TRUST). Methods: This is a mixed methods study with three consecutive phases. Phase 1 iteratively developed a patient-preferred result method using semi-structured focus groups and a consensus-orientated-decision model, a PPI group to refine the method and adult literacy review for plain English assessment. Phase 2 was a single-blind parallel group trial. Irish TRUST participants were randomised to the intervention (patient-preferred method) and control group (standard method developed by lead study site). Phase 3 used a patient understanding questionnaire to compare patient understanding of results between the two methods. Results: Patients want to receive results of clinical trials, with qualitative findings indicating three key themes including ‘acknowledgement of individual contribution’, ‘contributing for a collective benefit’ and ‘receiving accessible and easy to understand results’. Building on these findings, a patient-preferred method of receiving results was developed as described above. TRUST participants (n=101) were randomised to the intervention. The questionnaire response rate was 74% for the intervention group and 62% for the control group. There were no differences in patient understanding between the two methods. Conclusions: We have demonstrated that it is feasible to conduct PPI with regard to the dissemination of results. The study identified and developed a patient-preferred method of receiving clinical trial results for older adults over 65 years. Although, in this study PPI did not influence patients’ final understanding of results, it provides a record of the process of conducting PPI within the clinical trial setting.

Clinical trial result dissemination, Patient and public involvement, SWAT, patient involvement in clinical trials, research dissemination, study results, study within a trial, trial results.
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HRB Open Research
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F1000 Research