Improving donor retention following a temporary deferral: A cluster randomized controlled trial of deferral educational materials

Clinical Services and Research, Australian Red Cross Lifeblood, Melbourne, Australia. Clinical Services and Research, Australian Red Cross Lifeblood, Sydney, Australia. Mitchell Institute for Education and Health Policy, Victoria University, Melbourne, Australia. School of Population Health, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia. Monash Art Design and Architecture, Monash University, Melbourne, Australia.

Transfusion. 2022
PICO Summary

Population

Deferred blood donors from 30 Australian Lifeblood donor centers (n= 6,039).

Intervention

Incenter educational materials consisting of a brochure about referral and a ‘conversation guide’ prompting staff to be empathetic, plus a follow up email (Incenter Brochure plus Email group, n= 2,022).

Comparison

Business-as-usual incenter process and a follow up email (Email only group, n= 2,028). Business-as-usual deferral process (Control group, n= 1,989).

Outcome

Compared with donors in the Control group, donors in the Incenter Brochure plus Email group had increased odds of return at 3 months after their deferral ended (odds ratio (OR): 1.16). Subgroup analysis highlighted that novice (OR: 1.38) and established donors (OR: 1.36) had increased odds of return if they received the incenter materials. Donors who were deferred to maintain their well-being (OR: 1.28) and donors with a prior deferral history (OR: 1.55) had increased odds of return if they received the incenter materials. No significant differences were found between the Email Only and Control conditions.
Abstract
BACKGROUND Providing educational materials to deferred donors has been shown to increase their understanding about their deferral and knowledge about their return. The aim of this study was to determine the effectiveness of educational materials in increasing the retention of deferred donors. STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS A three-arm cluster randomized controlled trial was conducted, with the following conditions: (a) Incenter Brochure plus Email; (b) Email Only; (c) Control. The Incenter Brochure plus Email condition also included a guided conversation led by staff at the point of deferral. Donors were followed up for 3 months after their deferral had ended to determine if they had attempted to donate. RESULTS Compared with the Control condition, donors in the Incenter Brochure plus Email condition had increased odds of return at 3 months after their deferral ended (OR: 1.16; 95% CI 1.00-1.33). Subgroup analysis highlighted that novice (OR: 1.38; 95% CI 1.04-1.83) and established donors (OR: 1.36; 95% CI 1.13-1.64) had increased odds of return if they received the incenter materials. Donors who were deferred to maintain their well-being (OR: 1.28; 95% CI 1.03-1.60) and donors with a prior deferral history (OR: 1.55; 95% CI 1.15-1.55) had increased odds of return if they received the incenter materials. No significant differences were found between the Email Only and Control conditions. DISCUSSION This trial demonstrates the benefits of providing onsite educational materials to donors at the point of deferral. This is a simple, effective strategy to increase the return behavior of donors within 3 months of their deferral ending.
Study details
Language : eng
Credits : Bibliographic data from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine