16 January 2020

In Paediatric and Perinatal Epidemiology Marleen van Gelder and Nel Roeleveld described the recruitment methods and online data collection within the PRIDE Study, the largest Dutch birth cohort study and among the firsts to use Web-based questionnaires as mode of data collection in medical research.
 
The PRegnancy and Infant DEvelopment (PRIDE) Study is an ongoing prospective cohort study among pregnant women. Its primary aim is to identify exposures during pregnancy and in early life that may affect short‐term or long‐term health of mother and/or child. Dutch women are invited for participation as early in pregnancy as possible (mean gestational week: 10). Initially, only prenatal care providers recruited participants, but alternative recruitment methods were added, including collaboration with ‘Moeders voor Moeders’ and social media advertisements. Characteristics of participants differ between recruitment methods. Although recruitment rates were lower than expected based on the pilot study, we expect to include the 10,000th pregnancy by the end of January, making the PRIDE Study the largest birth cohort study in the Netherlands.
 
Priority exposures include medication use during pregnancy, maternal depressive symptoms, physical and emotional stress, occupational exposures, and lifestyle factors, whereas pregnancy complications, birth outcomes, childhood asthma, and ADHD are among the priority outcomes. We were among the firsts to implement Web-based questionnaires as a method of data collection in medical research. Our studies showed that the validity of data collected through Web-based questionnaires was similar or even higher compared to traditional methods of data collection in similar settings. In addition to the prenatal (baseline, gestational weeks 17 and 34) and biannual post-partum questionnaires, we collect data with paternal questionnaires, food frequency questionnaires, and blood and saliva samples among subgroups. Furthermore, various focus cohorts are implemented for dedicated data collection.
 
Lessons learned include the acceptance of technical hassles, the need for additional efforts to reduce loss to follow-up, and the strong preference of the study population for administration of questionnaires on smartphones, which needs additional programming. The PRIDE Study is open for collaboration.
 
Publication
The PRIDE Study: Evaluation of online methods of data collection
van Gelder MMHJ, Merkus PJFM, van Drongelen J, Swarts JW, van de Belt TH, Roeleveld N.
 
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