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Br J Gen Pract. Nov 1999; 49(448): 905–906.
PMCID: PMC1313564

'Bin bag' study: a survey of the research requests received by general practitioners and the primary health care team.


General practitioners receive a large and increasing number of unsolicited requests to participate in research. This study describes the volume and nature of research requests received by 18 primary care teams in a three-month period. On average, each practice receives 16 to 24 research requests each year. The most frequent request is to complete a questionnaire (32%). Only one-fifth of studies originate from academic or service general practice. Remuneration for participating in a study was only offered for 15% of studies. Although general practice teams feel swamped by research requests, this sensation may be exaggerated by invitations to participate in non-scientific surveys as well as true research projects. Practice teams would welcome help in distinguishing quality research proposals from the remainder.

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Selected References

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  • Lattimer V, Smith H, Hungin P, Glasper A, George S. Future provision of out of hours primary medical care: a survey with two general practitioner research networks. BMJ. 1996 Feb 10;312(7027):352–356. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
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