Third mailings in epidemiological studies

are they really necessary?

Alison M Elliott, Philip C Hannaford

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

INTRODUCTION: Whether or not third mailings are appropriate or worthwhile in postal epidemiological studies has not been thoroughly investigated and requires examination.

METHODS: A self-completion postal questionnaire of 2184 individuals was conducted in 2000. The socio-demographic and health characteristics of four groups of individuals (first mailing respondents, second mailing respondents, third mailing respondents and non-respondents) were compared.

RESULTS: Some significant differences between the groups were found, however, the inclusion of respondents to the third mailing did not significantly change the overall characteristics of respondents compared to non-respondents.

DISCUSSION: When differences do exist between respondents and non-respondents, our results suggest that a third mailing is unlikely to remove many of these differences. The study supports our previous suggestion that the effort and resources expended in carrying out a third mailing may not be justified.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)592-4
Number of pages3
JournalFamily Practice
Volume20
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2003
Externally publishedYes

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Epidemiologic Studies
Surveys and Questionnaires
Demography
Health

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title = "Third mailings in epidemiological studies: are they really necessary?",
abstract = "INTRODUCTION: Whether or not third mailings are appropriate or worthwhile in postal epidemiological studies has not been thoroughly investigated and requires examination.METHODS: A self-completion postal questionnaire of 2184 individuals was conducted in 2000. The socio-demographic and health characteristics of four groups of individuals (first mailing respondents, second mailing respondents, third mailing respondents and non-respondents) were compared.RESULTS: Some significant differences between the groups were found, however, the inclusion of respondents to the third mailing did not significantly change the overall characteristics of respondents compared to non-respondents.DISCUSSION: When differences do exist between respondents and non-respondents, our results suggest that a third mailing is unlikely to remove many of these differences. The study supports our previous suggestion that the effort and resources expended in carrying out a third mailing may not be justified.",
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Third mailings in epidemiological studies : are they really necessary? / Elliott, Alison M; Hannaford, Philip C.

In: Family Practice, Vol. 20, No. 5, 10.2003, p. 592-4.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Third mailings in epidemiological studies

T2 - are they really necessary?

AU - Elliott, Alison M

AU - Hannaford, Philip C

PY - 2003/10

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N2 - INTRODUCTION: Whether or not third mailings are appropriate or worthwhile in postal epidemiological studies has not been thoroughly investigated and requires examination.METHODS: A self-completion postal questionnaire of 2184 individuals was conducted in 2000. The socio-demographic and health characteristics of four groups of individuals (first mailing respondents, second mailing respondents, third mailing respondents and non-respondents) were compared.RESULTS: Some significant differences between the groups were found, however, the inclusion of respondents to the third mailing did not significantly change the overall characteristics of respondents compared to non-respondents.DISCUSSION: When differences do exist between respondents and non-respondents, our results suggest that a third mailing is unlikely to remove many of these differences. The study supports our previous suggestion that the effort and resources expended in carrying out a third mailing may not be justified.

AB - INTRODUCTION: Whether or not third mailings are appropriate or worthwhile in postal epidemiological studies has not been thoroughly investigated and requires examination.METHODS: A self-completion postal questionnaire of 2184 individuals was conducted in 2000. The socio-demographic and health characteristics of four groups of individuals (first mailing respondents, second mailing respondents, third mailing respondents and non-respondents) were compared.RESULTS: Some significant differences between the groups were found, however, the inclusion of respondents to the third mailing did not significantly change the overall characteristics of respondents compared to non-respondents.DISCUSSION: When differences do exist between respondents and non-respondents, our results suggest that a third mailing is unlikely to remove many of these differences. The study supports our previous suggestion that the effort and resources expended in carrying out a third mailing may not be justified.

U2 - 10.1093/fampra/cmg517

DO - 10.1093/fampra/cmg517

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JO - Family Practice

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SN - 0263-2136

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