Prevention Science [PREV] pp433-prev-369817 March 6, 2002 15:48 Style ﬁle version Nov. 04, 2000
Prevention Science, Vol. 3, No. 1, March 2002 (
Recruitment of Older Participants in Frailty/Injury
Marcia G. Ory,
Paula Darby Lipman,
Patricia L. Karlen,
Meghan B. Gerety,
Victor J. Stevens,
Maria A. Fiatarone Singh,
David M. Buchner,
Kenneth B. Schechtman,
and The FICSIT Group
Despite the lifelong health beneﬁts of physical activity, frailer older adults have typically been
excluded from studies promoting more active lifestyles. This study documents the recruit-
ment process and costs from a multisite study to identify effective strategies for recruiting
older adults in frailty/injury prevention research. Randomized controlled clinical trials were
conducted at 7 sites; an 8th site was a compliance study. Interventions reﬂected center- and
home-based health promotion programs. Site objectives, eligibility criteria, and contact and
screening methods were obtained from manuals of operation. Recruitment results (number
screened, eligibility rates, randomized to screened ratios) were ascertained from recruitment
data. Sites furnished estimated recruitment costs (nonlabor expenses, investigator and staff
time, fringe beneﬁts) up to signing the consent form. The sites targeted diverse populations
and sample sizes. The majority revised recruitment methods to meet their recruitment goals.
Most sites estimated costs of recruitment at over $300 per participant randomized. Recruit-
ment costs were affected by staff time spent alleviating concerns about participants’ health,
essential interactions with family members, and arranging for transportation. Neither frailty
nor intervention intensity was found to be a major predictor of recruitment outcomes. Recruit-
ment expense was associated with selection criteria and frailty status of the target population.
Older people can be successfully recruited into beneﬁcial health promotion programs, but it
is often challenging. In planning health promotion studies, investigators need to be aware of
the numbers of older people they may need to screen and different strategies for increasing
KEY WORDS: frailty; injury prevention; recruitment; costs; clinical trials; physical activity; exercise.
Behavioral and Social Research Program, National Institute on
Aging, Bethesda, Maryland.
Texas A and M University System College Station, Texas.
Aspen Systems Corporation, Rockville, Maryland.
Center for Health Studies, Group Health Cooperative of Puget
Sound, Seattle, Washington.
Geriatric Research, Education and Clinical Center, the Audie L.
Murphy Veterans Affairs Hospital, San Antonio, Texas.
University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio, Texas.
Center for Health Research, Kaiser Permanente, Portland,
School of Exercise and Sport Science, University of Sydney,
Hebrew Rehabilitation Center for the Aged.
The USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging, Tufts
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia.
Departments of Health Services and Medicine, University of
Washington, Seattle, Washington.
Health Services Research and Development Field Program,
Seattle VA Medical Center, Seattle, Washington.
Division of Biostatistics, Washington University School of
Medicine, St. Louis, Missouri.
See Appendix 1.
Correspondence should be directed to Paula Darby Lipman,
Ph.D., Aspen Systems Corporation, 2277 Research Blvd.,
Mailstop 5U, Rockville, Maryland 20850; e-mail: plipman@
2002 Society for Prevention Research