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Consenting to health record linkage: evidence from a multi-purpose longitudinal survey of a general population

Knies, Gundi and Burton, Jonathan and Sala, Emanuela (2012) 'Consenting to health record linkage: evidence from a multi-purpose longitudinal survey of a general population.' BMC Health Services Research, 12 (1). 52-. ISSN 1472-6963


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Background: The British Household Panel Survey (BHPS) is the first long-running UK longitudinal survey with a non-medical focus and a sample covering the whole age range to have asked for permission to link to a range of administrative health records. This study determines whether informed consent led to selection bias and reflects on the value of the BHPS linked with health records for epidemiological research. Methods. Multivariate logistical regression is used, with whether the respondent gave consent to data linkage or not as the dependent variable. Independent variables were entered as four blocks; (i) a set of standard demographics likely to be found in most health registration data, (ii) a broader set of socio-economic characteristics, (iii) a set of indicators of health conditions and (iv) information about the use of health services. Results: Participants aged 16-24, males and those living in England were more likely to consent. Consent is not biased with respect to socio-economic characteristics or health. Recent users of GP services are underrepresented among consenters. Conclusions: Whilst data could only be linked for a minority of BHPS participants, the BHPS offers a great range of information on people's life histories, their attitudes and behaviours making it an invaluable source for epidemiological research. © 2012 Knies et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Humans; Medical Record Linkage; Logistic Models; Longitudinal Studies; Age Factors; Sex Factors; Informed Consent; Socioeconomic Factors; Adolescent; Adult; Aged; Middle Aged; Female; Male; Young Adult; United Kingdom; Bias
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences
Faculty of Social Sciences > Institute for Social and Economic Research
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 18 Jul 2013 15:36
Last Modified: 15 Jan 2022 00:26

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