Join our Studies
Are you interested in participating in a CAN-BIND research study to help advance our understanding of depression and treatment response? Learn about our studies here.
What does it mean to be a research participant?
Click below to read frequently asked questions (FAQs) about being a research participant, and to learn about the research process.
- Research Participant Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How do I participate in a CAN-BIND research study?
Please browse our Ongoing Studies page to find information about each study, such as where the study is taking place, and the profile of individuals who can participate. If you want to participate or have any questions about the study, please contact the respective coordinator listed.
What do research participants do?
Each study will have its own outline and timelines, with specific research methods. As part of the research methods, you might be asked a series of questionnaires and/or interviews (known as clinical assessments), provide molecular samples (i.e. blood, urine, saliva), and/or conduct a brain scan (i.e. neuroimaging). All of this information will be provided to you before informed consent.
What is informed consent?
Informed consent is the process of learning the key facts about a research study, and deciding to participate. During this process, you are encouraged to ask any questions you may have. To complete this process, you will be asked to sign an informed consent form. Only individuals who have signed an informed consent form will participate in a research study.
If I sign an informed consent form, am I obligated to complete the study?
No, the choice of whether or not to participate, and when to stop participating, is always yours.
Will I be compensated for participating?
Some research studies will cover the cost for you to participate (i.e. public transportation costs, or meals for longer studies), while others will provide a monetary gift for participating. Regardless, participants will not be out of pocket for participating.
What are the benefits of participating in a research study?
By being a research participant, you have the opportunity to contribute to the field of depression research. It is also an opportunity to gain knowledge and share with others.
What happens when the research study is completed?
Your individual information will be entirely anonymous, and your name and other identifying information will not be shared. Your anonymized data will be analyzed by the research team. The results of the analysis will often be shared through academic publications, social media, at conferences, and at community events to ensure that our research results reach the right audiences. In order to improve depression care, our goals are to increase public knowledge in the field, influence healthcare policy and guide clinical practice. As a participant, there are often opportunities to be a part of these exchanges of knowledge, participate in future studies/events, and/or be a part of our voluntary Community Advisory Committee (CAC) with the potential to share your story and be a key contributor to knowledge translation projects.
What questions should I ask?
It is important to ask as many questions as you may have before you agree to participate in the study by giving your informed consent. Questions you have might be related to how long you will be asked to participate, where the study will take place, or what you will be expected to do. Given the sensitive subject matter of our research studies, we understand privacy and confidentiality is of utmost importance, and you may have questions regarding how this is maintained.
You may also be interested in the development of the research project, such as the overall goals, and how this project could bring advancements to the field.
Writing down your questions ahead of time will help with remembering them all, but if there are questions you think of later, feel free to ask at any stage of the research process. Remember, it is your right to have this information.
Questions you might consider asking:
- What is the purpose of the study?
- Who is funding the study?
- Who has reviewed and approved the study?
- What are the potential benefits of this study?
- What are the potential side effects and/or risks? What will be done to mitigate these?
- How is participant safety being maintained?
- Can I talk to other people in the study?
- Will I/how will I be compensated for my participation?
- What medication(s)/treatment(s), if any, will I receive?
- If I am already using medication(s)/treatment(s), will I have to stop using it during this study? If so, could this have any health consequences for me?
- Is there anything else I will be asked to stop or start doing during the study?
- Can I participate in more than one study at a time?
- Research Process
Although studies vary, a usual process is described below.
If you have contacted the designated researcher because you are interested in participating, they will call you to ask a series of questions directly related to the study, to determine if you may be eligible to participate. An In-person Screening would then be conducted in order to officially determine your eligibility.
If it is determined that you may be eligible to participate in the research study and you chose to continue, an in-person meeting will take place between you and the researcher to discuss the procedures, risks, and benefits of the study, and to answer any further questions you may have. If you agree to participate after receiving this information, you would do so by signing an informed consent document.
If you are deemed eligible to participate, and you chose to do so, you will proceed to regular Study Visits. Length of visits, and what processes will take place at each visit varies by study. Dependent on the study, sessions might involve questionnaires, blood tests, brain scans, or medication. Your health and safety is of utmost importance to our research team throughout this process.
Data Collection and Analysis
Once study visits are complete, our research team will analyze the anonymous information collected.
Because of our research participants, we are able to use the data collected to seek discovery of successful treatment strategies and work towards our mission of delivering fast and effective care to all Canadians living with depression.
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Allen TA, et al., Psychological Medicine, 2018