Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home

LO084: Text messaging research participants as a follow-up strategy to decrease emergency department study attrition

  • C. Varner (a1), S.L. McLeod (a1), N. Nahiddi (a1) and B. Borgundvaag (a1)

Abstract

Introduction: Collecting patient-reported follow-up data for prospective studies in the emergency department (ED) is challenging in this acute care, minimal continuity setting. Follow-up is frequently attempted using telephone contact and in some instances mail correspondence. The objective of this study was to determine if text messaging study participants involved in an ongoing randomized trial resulted in a lower rate of attrition as compared to conventional telephone follow-up. Methods: This was a secondary analysis of research participants enrolled in a randomized controlled trial assessing head injury discharge instructions. Adult (18-64 years) patients presenting to an academic ED (annual census 65,000) with chief complaint ‘head injury’ occurring within 24 hours of ED visit were contacted by telephone 2 and 4 weeks post ED visit to complete a symptom questionnaire. During the first 4 months of study follow-up, participants were contacted by a conventional telephone call. Attrition was higher than anticipated, thus we received subsequent ethics approval for the final 3 months of follow-up duration to contact participants by text message on the day of the first telephone attempt as a reminder of the telephone interview scheduled later that day. The proportion of patients lost to follow-up at 2 and 4 weeks post ED visit was compared between participants not receiving and receiving reminder text messages. Results: 118 patients were enrolled in the study (78 underwent conventional follow-up and 40 received text messages). Mean (SD) age was 35.2 (13.7) years and 43 (36.4%) were male. During the period of conventional follow-up, 3 participants withdrew from the study. Of the remaining 75 participants, 24 (32.0%) at 2 weeks and 32 (42.7%) at 4 weeks were unable to be contacted. Of the 40 participants receiving a reminder text message, 4 (10.0%) at 2 weeks and 10 (25.0%) at 4 weeks were unable to be contacted. Overall, text messaging study participants decreased attrition by 22% (95% CI: 5.9%, 34.7%) and 17.7% (95% CI: -0.8%, 33.3%) at 2 and 4 week follow-up, respectively. Conclusion: In this young ED cohort participating in a randomized trial, text message reminders of upcoming telephone follow-up interviews decreased the rate of attrition. Text messaging is a viable, low-cost communication strategy that can improve follow-up participation in prospective research studies.

    • Send article to Kindle

      To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

      Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

      Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

      LO084: Text messaging research participants as a follow-up strategy to decrease emergency department study attrition
      Available formats
      ×

      Send article to Dropbox

      To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

      LO084: Text messaging research participants as a follow-up strategy to decrease emergency department study attrition
      Available formats
      ×

      Send article to Google Drive

      To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

      LO084: Text messaging research participants as a follow-up strategy to decrease emergency department study attrition
      Available formats
      ×

Copyright

Keywords

LO084: Text messaging research participants as a follow-up strategy to decrease emergency department study attrition

  • C. Varner (a1), S.L. McLeod (a1), N. Nahiddi (a1) and B. Borgundvaag (a1)

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed.