E-mail invitations to general practitioners were as effective as postal invitations and were more efficient

Shaun Treweek*, Karen Barnett, Graeme MacLennan, Debbie Bonetti, Martin P. Eccles, Jill J. Francis, Claire Jones, Nigel B. Pitts, Ian W. Ricketts, Mark Weal, Frank Sullivan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objective: To evaluate which of two invitation methods, e-mail or post, was most effective at recruiting general practitioners (GPs) to an online trial.

Study Design and Setting: Randomized controlled trial. Participants were GPs in Scotland, United Kingdom.

Results: Two hundred and seventy GPs were recruited. Using e-mail did not improve recruitment (risk difference = 0.7% [95% confidence interval -2.7% to 4.1%]). E-mail was, however, simpler to use and cheaper, costing 3.20 pound per recruit compared with 15.69 pound for postal invitations. Reminders increased recruitment by around 4% for each reminder sent for both invitation methods.

Conclusions: In the Scottish context, inviting GPs to take part in an online trial by e-mail does not adversely affect recruitment and is logistically easier and cheaper than using postal invitations. (C) 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)793-797
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Clinical Epidemiology
Volume65
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2012

Keywords

  • Recruitment
  • Randomized controlled trials
  • E-mail
  • Postal
  • Reminders
  • Primary care
  • PRIMARY-CARE
  • INTERVENTIONS
  • ANTIBIOTICS
  • RECRUITMENT
  • TRIAL

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