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EQUIC-SM: Enhancing Quality of Informed Consent (EQUIC)

This study has been completed.
Information provided by:
VA Office of Research and Development Identifier:
First received: March 27, 2002
Last updated: September 22, 2010
Last verified: September 2010
Patients in 'parent' cooperative studies projects are interviewed about their experiences in the informed consent process.

Informed Consent

Study Type: Observational
Study Design: Time Perspective: Cross-Sectional
Official Title: CSP #476SM - Enhancing Quality of Informed Consent (EQUIC-SM) Self-Monitoring

Further study details as provided by VA Office of Research and Development:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Interview: Telephone based assessment of informed consent [ Time Frame: immediate ]

Enrollment: 836
Study Start Date: November 2002
Study Completion Date: March 2008
Primary Completion Date: July 2007 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
No intervention. Telephone interview.

Detailed Description:

Intervention: Self-Monitoring Questionnaire (a questionnaire relating to the process of IC self-administered by study coordinators) and evaluation of the informed consent process using the Brief Informed Consent Evaluation Protocol (BICEP) developed during the EQUIC-DP phase.

Primary Hypothesis: We hypothesize that by focusing attention on what may have become a routinized process, the quality of the IC encounter will be enhanced. We will evaluate the success of this intervention by having the patient-subject complete a telephone questionnaire, the BICEP (Brief Informed Consent Evaluation Protocol), after the IC process is completed.

Primary Outcomes: The quality of the informed consent process, as measured by the BICEP (Brief Informed Consent Evaluation Protocol). The BICEP also offers a method to certify informed consent in routine use.

Study Abstract: Enhancing the Quality of Informed Consent Self-Monitoring (EQUIC-SM) is one component of a VA Cooperative Studies Program-wide initiative on informed consent (EQUIC). Its objective is the field testing and iterative improvement of one intervention in the informed consent (IC) process, self monitoring. Self-monitoring involves having the person obtaining IC complete a Self-Monitoring Questionnaire, or SMQ after the IC encounter with a patient-subject being recruited for a participating study. We conceive of the SMQ as an activation device which prompts the person obtaining IC to monitor how he/she conducts the IC encounter. RESEARCH DESIGN: EQUIC-SM will be conducted in conjunction with participating clinical trials of the VA CSP at multiple VAs throughout the country. Patient-subjects will be recruited from among participants in these parent studies. Parent studies will be randomized to SM protocol or to control sites.

METHODOLOGY: Patient-subjects will be informed about EQUIC-SM at the time that they are first presented with information about the parent study. The person obtaining consent will use a scripted description of EQUIC-SM. If the subject agrees, verbal consent for EQUIC-SM will be obtained. The same parent study informed consent process will be used for both the SM protocol and control arms of EQUIC-SM; however in the SM protocol arm, the person obtaining consent will complete the SMQ after the IC process. In both arms, patient-subjects will be asked to complete the BICEP interview after the parent study IC process is completed. FINDINGS: Investigators will use the results of EQUIC-SM to assess the value of the self-monitoring technique in improving the quality of informed consent. The premise is that focusing the attention of the person obtaining informed consent on the IC process will enhance the quality of the IC encounter, and thus of the informed consent obtained.

SIGNIFICANCE: Practitioners of clinical trials have a responsibility to ensure that patients participation in research be informed and voluntary. This responsibility implies that we should strive continuously to improve the effectiveness of methods for informing prospective research volunteers about experimental studies, thereby enhancing the protection of their interests. If the self-monitoring technique tested in EQUIC-SM proves to enhance the quality of informed consent, this technique may be adapted for wider use in conducting clinical trials, thus representing an important step towards this goal.


Ages Eligible for Study:   Child, Adult, Senior
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   Yes
Sampling Method:   Non-Probability Sample
Study Population
Patients in various VA clinics

Inclusion Criteria:

Depends on 'parent' study

Exclusion Criteria:

  Contacts and Locations
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Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT00032565

  Show 22 Study Locations
Sponsors and Collaborators
VA Office of Research and Development
Study Chair: Philip Lavori, PhD VA Palo Alto Health Care System
  More Information

Publications automatically indexed to this study by Identifier (NCT Number):
Responsible Party: Lavori, Philip - Study Chair, Department of Veterans Affairs Identifier: NCT00032565     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 476SM
Study First Received: March 27, 2002
Last Updated: September 22, 2010 processed this record on April 24, 2017