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Participant Experiences in a Human Biomonitoring Study: Follow-Up Interviews with Participants of the Flemish Environment and Health Study
Journal Contribution - Journal Article
Communicating individual human biomonitoring results to study participants has been the subject of debate for some time. This debate is dominated by ethical considerations from a researchers' perspective on whether or not to communicate, thereby overlooking more practice-based questions from a participants' perspective on what and how to communicate. We conducted a small scale follow-up study based on eleven face-to-face interviews with mothers participating in the third cycle of the Flemish Environment and Health Study (FLEHS III 2012-2015) to investigate how they experienced and interpreted individual biomonitoring results. Key findings indicate that respondents were generally satisfied with participating in the biomonitoring study, but the report-back process especially lacked contextualized information and interactive communication options to better comprehend and cope with personal results. These findings also argue in favor of a more tailored approach in which report-back methods, formats and content are diversified according to the type of results and the preferences of participants. A reflexive research practice with active engagement in follow-up research is crucial to improve participants' understanding and use of personal biomonitoring results.
Number of pages: 13