Why Participate in Research
Being part of the research can benefit your health, the well-being of a loved one, or help someone you don’t know.
By participating, you can:
- Shape and evaluate research projects so they incorporate the lived experience of heart failure
- Learn more about your own health and care to benefit yourself
- Gain access to leading healthcare professionals and cutting-edge treatments, technology, and care
- Contribute to new diagnostic, treatments, or care that improve the lives of people living with heart failure
- Some studies may offer participants financial compensation. Please see our Patient Compensation Policy to learn about how we recognize patient partners for their contributions.
Testimonial from Bill Fitzpatrick, Research Participant
“It feels good! I’m alive today because of everyone here at UHN. So being part of research, it’s a little bit of effort, but also a way to pay back for helping me survive through heart failure.”
Types of engagement in research
Engaging in research can be much more than consenting to join a study – although that is essential and important as we couldn’t do it without you. You can:
- Be part of a team developing a research proposal
- Be a lay reviewer on the peer review panel evaluating research proposals
- Be part of an advisory committee – influencing our priorities and activities as a result of research findings.
- Be a study participant.
- Help discuss and promote research findings so more people understand and apply this new knowledge.
What to Know Before Engaging as a Study Participant
Many protections are in place to safeguard the rights and safety of research participants.
However, before you participate in a research study, there are still some things you should make yourself aware of:
- What are the criteria for participation? Are you eligible?
- Has the study been approved by a Research Ethics Board?
- What is the purpose of the study? Why and how is research being conducted?
- What are the risks associated with participation?
- How will your privacy be protected?
- Where does the study take place? Is it virtual or in-person?
- Are there costs associated with participation (i.e. travel)? If so, will you be reimbursed?
- What are the benefits of participating? Is there compensation available?
- What are your expectations of you as a study participant?
- What is the length of participation/anticipated time commitment?
- Who can you contact for more information or to withdraw?
As a research participant, you are free to withdraw at any time. Your participation is totally voluntary.
To learn more about the different types of clinical trials and how they advance understanding of diseases and how to treat them, check out the Heart Failure Society of America’s (HFSA) Patient Education Module on Clinical Trials. For a more in-depth exploration of the importance of clinical trials and how to participate in them, HFSA also offers a patient-centered tutorial on clinical trials.