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Can I provide incentives to participants?

Yes. Research incentives may be utilized to show appreciation to study subjects for their time and effort in participation.  However, participation must always be voluntary. Compensation must not be excessive or inappropriate in order to obtain participation, nor can the compensation threaten (overtly or implicitly) harm or negative consequences in order to obtain participation. The IRB will review both the amount and method of incentivizing participants and consider whether the compensation is coercive or presents a situation of undue influence. In addition, if all participants are being provided an incentive, the incentive must be the same amount for everyone.

Please note, incentives should not be listed under the “Description of Benefits” section of the protocol or the Informed Consent document. Adding the incentive to this section suggests that incentives can cancel out any of the potential negative effects, which it cannot. There is a separate "Incentives" section in the protocol and Informed Consent where you can list the incentive information.