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Int J Qual Health Care. 2012 Aug;24(4):433-8. doi: 10.1093/intqhc/mzs031. Epub 2012 Jun 11.

User-experience surveys with maternity services: a randomized comparison of two data collection models.

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  • 1Department for Quality Measurement and Patient Safety, Norwegian Knowledge Centre for the Health Services, Boks 7004 St Olavs plass, 0130 Oslo, Norway. oan@kunnskapssenteret.no



To compare two ways of combining postal and electronic data collection for a maternity services user-experience survey.


Cross-sectional survey.


Maternity services in Norway.


All women who gave birth at a university hospital in Norway between 1 June and 27 July 2010.


Patients were randomized into the following groups (n= 752): Group A, who were posted questionnaires with both electronic and paper response options for both the initial and reminder postal requests; and Group B, who were posted questionnaires with an electronic response option for the initial request, and both electronic and paper response options for the reminder postal request.


Response rate, the amount of difference in background variables between respondents and non-respondents, main study results and estimated cost-effectiveness.


The final response rate was significantly higher in Group A (51.9%) than Group B (41.1%). None of the background variables differed significantly between the respondents and non-respondents in Group A, while two variables differed significantly between the respondents and non-respondents in Group B. None of the 11 user-experience scales differed significantly between Groups A and B. The estimated costs per response for the forthcoming national survey was €11.7 for data collection Model A and €9.0 for Model B.


The model with electronic-only response option in the first request had lowest response rate. However, this model performed equal to the other model on non-response bias and better on estimated cost-effectiveness, and is the better of the two models in large-scale user experiences surveys with maternity services.

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