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Human Subjects Division (HSD)


Approaching and Recruiting Prospective Subjects - Telephone

Telephone calls used to recruit prospective subjects

Include in the Human Subjects Application for IRB review a script or protocol for the initial call. This should, in general, include:

  • A check to make sure that the right person is on the line; especially important when announcing the study name or other information that could breach subjects' confidentiality or otherwise put them at risk.
  • If a message will be left for subjects or prospective subjects who are not available to take the call, provide the text of the message, indicating how breach of confidentiality will be avoided when leaving it (this may require ensuring that if some curious person calls back, they do not hear a greeting that itself breaches the confidentiality of the subject or prospective subject).
  • An introduction identifying the caller and the study, and their departmental and University of Washington affiliation.
  • A statement about, or reminder of, how the prospective subject's name was obtained.
  • A question that allows the prospective subject to opt out of the telephone interview, or set a more convenient time ("Are you interested in hearing more about this study? Is this a good time to talk?").
  • A general description of the study.
  • If any screening questions will be asked, a description of the questions, especially of the most personal and sensitive a subject can expect to be asked, accompanied by the statement, "You are free not to answer any questions you do not wish to answer".
  • A request for verbal consent before proceeding with the questions, and a statement about what will be done with the screening data if prospective subjects are screened out, and how long screening data will be kept in identifiable form.
  • The screening questions that will be asked, and what will be said to subjects if they are screened out.
  • The arrangement of an appointment or next step for those eligible prospective subjects who wish to, continue.
  • A closing that includes a contact name and telephone number if the person should have any further questions about the study.

Change Notes

  • Noted 12/20/2010 @ 11:37am
    Keyword newly added.
    - sherrye