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J Clin Epidemiol. 2006 Jul;59(7):732-8. Epub 2006 Mar 24.

Combining conditional and unconditional recruitment incentives could facilitate telephone tracing in surveys of postpartum women.

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1
Department of Epidemiology, College of Public Health, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA 52242, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE:

To compare tracing and contact rates using alternative incentives in a computer-assisted telephone interview (CATI) survey among postpartum women.

METHODS:

In a randomized trial of 1,061 postpartum women 18-49 years of age selected from four Iowa counties, we compared the effects of: (1) unconditional $5 telephone card incentive enclosed with the introductory letter followed by $25 incentive conditional upon successful telephone tracing, contact, and completion of CATI (Group 1, n = 530) vs. (2) $30 incentive conditional upon subject completion of CATI (Group 2, n = 531).

RESULTS:

Overall telephone tracing and contact rates achieved were 67.8% and 66.6%, respectively. Tracing (70.2 vs. 65.4%, P = .09) and contact (68.5 vs. 64.8%, P = .26) rates were consistently higher among subjects assigned the combination of a conditional and an unconditional incentive. The combined incentive type had a greater impact on telephone tracing success rates for subjects on whom we could not initially locate an active telephone number (16.7 vs. 7.3%, P = .07) when compared to subjects for whom we found an active telephone number at the time of mailing the introductory letter (78.9 vs. 75.9%, P = .30).

CONCLUSIONS:

Combining conditional and unconditional recruitment incentives can facilitate telephone tracing efforts in surveys conducted among recently postpartum women.

PMID:
16765277
DOI:
10.1016/j.jclinepi.2005.11.011
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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