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APHA Scientific Session and Event Listing
3180.0: Monday, November 05, 2007 - Board 10

Abstract #151704

Advantages and disadvantages of using an internet-based data collection tool for research purposes

R. Dawn Comstock, PhD and Christy L. Collins, MA. Center for Injury Research and Policy, The Research Institute at Nationwide Children's Hospital, 700 Children's Drive, Columbus, OH 43205, (614)355-2847, comstocd@pediatrics.ohio-state.edu

Purpose: To examine the advantages and disadvantages of using an internet-based data collection tool through a sports-injury study example.

Methods: Using an internet-based data collection tool, RIO(TM) (Reporting Information Online), certified athletic trainers (ATCs) from 100 high schools reported exposure and injury data for athletes participating in nine sports during the 2005-06 school year.

Results: 4,120 National Athletic Trainers' Association affiliated ATCs with valid emails were invited to participate with 425 (10.3%) agreeing to participate. ATCs from 95 of the 100 randomly selected participating schools reported data. Of these 95, 84 (88.4%) were fully compliant (completed all 42 weekly exposure and injury report forms), 5 (5.3%) had minor compliance problems, 2 (2.1%) had larger compliance problems (missing multiple weekly exposure/injury report forms), and 4 (4.2%) dropped out of the study. The non-response rate for individual questions on the injury report form was <2%. An internal validity audit of a 5% sample at the conclusion of the study found a sensitivity of 94.4%, a predictive value of a positive of 94.4%, and a specificity of 99.5%. All 33 ATCs who completed the satisfaction survey reported the system was very or somewhat easy to use.

Conclusions: Internet-based data collection tools can be an efficient and cost-effective way to study large numbers of geographically dispersed individuals, particularly in multi-report longitudinal studies. Such systems can capture high quality data with good subject compliance, low non-response rates, and low loss to follow-up. Limitations to such systems include: technical issues, accessing potential participants, and enrolling participants.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: Data/Surveillance, Epidemiology

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Any relevant financial relationships? No
Any institutionally-contracted trials related to this submission?

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

Posters on Innovative Injury Data Uses and Surveillance

The 135th APHA Annual Meeting & Exposition (November 3-7, 2007) of APHA