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New article on the acceptability and feasibility of conducting the IDEAs pilot trial published in HRB Open.

14 Jul 2021

The research note outlines the acceptability and feasibility of study procedures used as part of the IDEAs cluster randomised pilot trial of an intervention in primary care to improve uptake of Ireland’s national diabetic retinopathy programme. 

Understanding primary care practices’ ‘readiness’ to engage in trials and their experience is important to inform trial procedures and supports. Few studies report on the feasibility of study procedures though this is a central part of pilot trials. As part of the embedded mixed-methods process evaluation, quantitative and qualitative data were gathered across four general practices participating in the IDEAs intervention. Interviews were conducted with a purposive sample of staff. Research logs on time spent on intervention delivery, staff assignment, resources, problems/changes, and reasons for drop-outs, were maintained over the course of intervention rollout, and practice audit data were analysed. We found that an interest in the topic area or in research motivated practices to take part in the trial, and reimbursement enabled them to participate. Staff valued the researcher briefing at the start of the trial, and found the audit manual and regular researcher contact, helped them stay on track and troubleshoot during data collection. While overall the IDEAs trial procedures were acceptable and feasible for primary care staff, there were challenges with conducting the audit which may reflect staff skills gaps and the need for greater guidance and support from researchers. You can read the full paper here.

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