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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Improving Understanding of Medical Research: Audience Response Technology for Community Consultation for Exception to Informed Consent

  • Author(s): Vohra, Taher
  • Bou Chebl, Ralphe
  • Miller, Joseph
  • Russman, Andrew
  • Baker, Anna
  • Lewandowski, Christopher
  • et al.

Introduction: The Department of Health and Human Services and Food and Drug Administration described guidelines for exception from informed consent (EFIC) research. These guidelines require community consultation (CC) events, which allow members of the community to understand the study, provide feedback and give advice. A real-time gauge of audience understanding would allow the speaker to modify the discussion. The objective of the study is to describe the use of audience response survey (ARS) technology in EFIC CCs.

Methods: As part of the Rapid Anticonvulsant Medication Prior to Arrival Trial (RAMPART), 13 CC events were conducted. We prepared a PowerPoint™ presentation with 4 embedded ARS questions,according to specific IRB guidelines to ensure that the pertinent information would reach our targeted audience. During 6 CCs, an ARS was used to gauge audience comprehension. Participants completed paper surveys regarding their opinion of the study following each CC. Results: The ARS was used with minimal explanation and only one ARS was lost. Greater than 80% of the participants correctly answered 3 of the 4 ARS questions with 61% correctly answering the question regarding EFIC. A total of 105 participants answered the paper survey; 80-90% of the responses to the paper survey were either strongly agree or agree. The average scores on the paper survey in the ARS sites compared to the non-ARS sites were significantly more positive.

Conclusion: The use of an audience response system during the community consultation aspects of EFIC is feasible and provides a real-time assessment of audience comprehension of the study and EFIC process. It may improve the community’s opinion and support of the study. [West J Emerg Med. 2014;15(4):414-418.]

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