Interviews can be conducted on a one-on-one basis or in a small group setting. Questions, or the focus of the discussions, can be semi-structured or structured, and are designed for a specific purpose — to help inform a decision around a certain stage of the research process (whether it be: identifying research priorities important to patient/public partners; clarifying and defining the research question; looking at the design of the research project; exploring whether the data collection approaches are appropriate and sensitive to the real-world context of patient/public partners; identifying outcomes measures that matter most to patient/public partners; interpretation of research findings; or dissemination of findings). It's important to meet patient/public partners where they are at. Though face-to-face is often the preferred method, interviews can be done over the phone as well.
Interviews can be useful for:
- Building patient/public relationships and partnerships.
- Gaining deeper insight into individual perspectives.
- Bringing to light unique solutions and ideas to decisions around the research process which may have never been considered by researchers.
- Explorative inquiry and answering open-ended questions that can delve into the experiential knowledge of patient/public partners and in turn inform research decisions.