Multi-city Study of Quality of Care for HIV-related Pneumocystis Carinii Pneumonia

Successfully Collecting Highly Sensitive Information

Published in: Clinical Performance and Quality Health Care, v. 3, no. 3, 1995, p. 140-146

Posted on RAND.org on January 01, 1995

by Carole Oken, Nancy Archibald, Marilyn Cvitanic, Andrea K. Biddle-Zehnder, Martin F. Shapiro, Charles Bennett

Data collection and other methodological issues related to the conduct of a multi-city quality-of-care-study among HIV patients are examined in this article. The article concludes that persons designing, coordinating, and managing such a study must become familiar with collecting and safeguarding sensitive data. Personal contact between provider staff and hospital and state officials is essential for establishing a basis for study participation. Hospital officials will respond positively if assured of confidentiality, and medical records staff will cooperate if the disruption to their work is minimal. Differences in state laws mean that investigators may face different obstacles at each site. Careful study sampling and design along with strict data collection protocols and flexible data collector scheduling are necessary requisites to accommodate the approval process and other difficulties.

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