Format

Send to

Choose Destination
BMJ Open. 2015 Aug 21;5(8):e007461. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2014-007461.

The impact of distance and duration of travel on participation rates and participants' satisfaction: results from a pilot study at one study centre in Pretest 2 of the German National Cohort.

Author information

1
Department of Epidemiology, Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research, Braunschweig, Lower Saxony, Germany.
2
Department of Epidemiology, Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research, Braunschweig, Lower Saxony, Germany TWINCORE Centre for Experimental and Clinical Infection Research, Hannover, Germany.
3
Institute for Biometry, Epidemiology and Information Processing, University of Veterinary Medicine, Hannover, Germany.
4
Department of Epidemiology, Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research, Braunschweig, Lower Saxony, Germany Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

In this pilot study within the Pretest 2 phase of the German National Cohort, we aimed to (1) test the hypothesis that distance and duration of travel to a study centre may affect participation rates and participants' satisfaction and (2) to obtain data that would help to select recruitment areas around the study centre Hannover with the greatest projected participation rate for the main study.

SETTING:

Mixed urban/suburban environment in Northern Germany with approximately 600,000 inhabitants. 4 recruitment areas with divergent estimated mean distances (range, 7-40 km) and duration of travel to the study centre Hannover were selected.

PARTICIPANTS:

1050 men and women (ratio, 1:1), aged 20-69 years, were randomly selected from the population registries of the 4 recruitment areas and invited by mail to participate in the Pretest 2 study programme at the study centre Hannover, covering a variety of questionnaire-based and physical assessments. 166 individuals participated (16%).

INTERVENTIONS:

All 166 participants completed a travel questionnaire containing 5 items relating to travel duration and satisfaction, amounting to a participation rate of 100% in the questionnaire-based part of the study.

RESULTS:

Participation rates in the Pretest 2 programme at the study centre Hannover by area ranged from 11% (area farthest from the study centre, estimated median distance 38 km) to 18% (nearest area, 2 km). The odds of non-participation were highest in the area farthest from the study centre (adjusted OR 2.06; p=0.01; CI 1.28 to 3.32). Nonetheless, 97% of participants were satisfied with travel duration.

CONCLUSIONS:

Increasing distance was associated with a lower participation rate. However, acceptance of duration of travel was high, irrespective of distance or duration. Thus, recruiting in farther away locations may select individuals with a greater frustration tolerance for travel to the study centre, perhaps due to a greater interest in participating in health-oriented studies and thus different health-related behaviour.

KEYWORDS:

EPIDEMIOLOGY; SOCIAL MEDICINE

PMID:
26297358
PMCID:
PMC4550716
DOI:
10.1136/bmjopen-2014-007461
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center