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Attention control groups strengthen randomized controlled trials of behavioral interventions, but researchers need to give careful consideration to the attention control activities. A comparative effectiveness research framework provides an ideal opportunity for an attention control group as a supplement to standard care, so participants potentially receive benefit regardless of group assignment. The anticipated benefit of the control condition must be independent of the study outcome. Resources needed for attention control activities need to be carefully considered and ethical considerations carefully weighed. In this paper we address nine considerations for the design and implementation of attention control groups: (1) ensure attention control activities are not associated with the outcome; (2) avoid contamination of the intervention or control group; (3) design comparable control and intervention activities; (4) ensure researcher training to adequately administer both treatment arms; (5) design control activities to be interesting and acceptable to participants; (6) evaluate attention control activities; (7) consider additional resources needed to implement attention control activities; (8) quantifying the effects of attention control and intervention groups; and (9) ethical considerations with attention control groups. Examples from the literature and ongoing research are presented. Careful planning for the attention control group is as important as for the intervention group. Researchers can use the considerations presented here to assist in planning for the best attention control group for their study.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Research in nursing & health
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Research that involves the application of the behavioral and social sciences to the study of the actions or reactions of persons or animals in response to external or internal stimuli. (from American Heritage Dictionary, 4th ed)
A process involving chance used in therapeutic trials or other research endeavor for allocating experimental subjects, human or animal, between treatment and control groups, or among treatment groups. It may also apply to experiments on inanimate objects.
The research and development of ELECTRICAL EQUIPMENT AND SUPPLIES for such medical applications as diagnosis, therapy, research, anesthesia control, cardiac control, and surgery. (From McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms, 6th ed)
Hospital or other institutional committees established to protect the welfare of research subjects. Federal regulations (the "Common Rule" (45 CFR 46)) mandate the use of these committees to monitor federally-funded biomedical and behavioral research involving human subjects.
Telephone surveys are conducted to monitor prevalence of the major behavioral risks among adults associated with premature MORBIDITY and MORTALITY. The data collected is in regard to actual behaviors, rather than on attitudes or knowledge. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) established the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) in 1984.
Food is any substance consumed to provide nutritional support for the body. It is usually of plant or animal origin, and contains essential nutrients, such as carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, or minerals. The substance is ingested by an organism ...