Abstract P145: Successful Use of Telephone and Mail for Obtaining Usable Accelerometer Data from a National Cohort: The Experience of the REasons for Geographic and Racial Differences in Stroke (REGARDS) Study
Background: Epidemiologic studies examining physical activity have used self-report or the preferred objective measurement devices of pedometers or accelerometers. NHANES 2003-2004 used remuneration, in-person and express mail methods to obtain accelerometer data from 7176 individuals with 4867 (68%) providing 4+ valid days of wear. Herein we describe the experience of another national epidemiologic study that used telephone and regular mail to obtain accelerometer data.
Methods: This is an ancillary study to REGARDS, a national, population-based, longitudinal study of 30,239 blacks and whites, aged > 45 years, enrolled January 2003-October 2007. Participants were recruited from communities across all 48 of the lower United States, and include residents of 1,855 of the 3,033 US counties. Baseline evaluations were conducted through computer-assisted telephone interview (CATI), self-administered questionnaires, and an in-home visit. Participants are followed by CATI every 6 months. Starting with the May 2009 follow-up calls, contingent on availability of an accelerometer, participants were asked about willingness to wear an accelerometer for 7 days. Device inventory was 1150. Accelerometer, instructions, and stamped addressed envelope for return were mailed to consenting participants. Postcard acknowledgement, reminders, and < two calls were made to encourage compliance with wearing device and its return. Participants receive summary results but no financial compensation.
Results: By August 23, 2012, 22 195 were asked in a CATI follow-up to participate; 52% initially consented, 17% deferred and will be recontacted, and 31% declined. Participation rates by race-sex groups were: WM 53%, WF 53%, BM 53%, BF 50%. Devices were shipped to 11,798 with a return rate of 92%; 935 are lost (outstanding > 120 days). Of accelerometers used/analyzed to date (n=9,422), 7819 (83%) provided 4+ valid days of wear, 434 (4.6%) had fewer than 4 valid days of wear, and 1,169 (12.4%) had incomplete/missing log sheet or device malfunction. The consenting-shipment-wearing-tracking-return-processing- and cleaning cycle is about 7-9 weeks per device, suggesting that approximately 6-7 participants can be evaluated per available device per year.
Conclusions: A high yield of usable accelerometer data can be obtained from a national cohort through mail and telephone methods.
- © 2013 by American Heart Association, Inc.