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Questions to ask before volunteering for research

Weighing all of the options – both risks and benefits – helps lead to an informed decision about getting involved in clinical research.

Those who wish to participate shouldn’t be afraid to ask questions; the research team is there to assist. Remember, participating in a study is totally voluntary, and participants can stop at any time throughout the process.

Possible questions to ask when deciding to join a study or trial:

  • What do the researchers hope to learn from the study?
  • What do participants have to do? What kinds of medications, procedures or tests will they have?
  • How will being in the study affect daily life?
  • What are the risks?
  • Are there any potential benefits?
  • How will volunteer privacy and identifiable private information be protected?
  • Will there be any travel or other study-associated costs (such as child care), and will researchers provide any money to cover those costs?
  • Will there be any charge for medical procedures?
  • Who can participants and potential participants contact with questions about participating?

See clinical research studies at Penn State College of Medicine.

See answers to more questions about clinical research.

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