Many individuals participate in research because they want access to treatments that may benefit them. However, in most research there is no guarantee that treatments will work for you.
Other benefits of participation that people have appreciated include:
Once you are enrolled in a study, you will meet the research coordinator who will help you throughout the study. Our coordinators are knowledgeable, professional, and caring. They will answer your questions, address concerns, and resolve any issue that may arise. Their goal is to ensure that your participation in the study is as successful as possible. Many MGH study participants tell us that working with their research coordinator is an important benefit of study participation.
Prompt expert evaluation
During the study, you will receive expert medical assessment and care at no cost from an MGH psychiatrist or psychologist who has specific expertise in depression. In most of our studies, patients see a doctor once a week or once every two weeks. Participating in a research study can be a good option for patients even while they are on a waiting list to see a psychiatrist or psychologist, as we typically have shorter wait times for our research studies.
The kind of treatment you receive at DCRP will depend on the particular study in which you participate. For example:
- Participants in a psychotherapy study (talk therapy) will meet with a psychiatrist or psychologist for regular sessions in which you will participate in a particular form of talk therapy.
- Participants in a medication study without therapy sessions will have appointments that focus on possible symptom changes and side-effects of the medication.
Free follow-up care option
We generally offer three months of free follow-up clinical care to people who participate in a study involving treatment at our clinic. This means you can see a clinician about once a month after the study. The clinician will help you plan for continuing your psychiatric care after you leave our clinic.
Compensation and other assistance
Some studies offer compensation to participants, and some may provide transportation vouchers or validated parking.
Contributing to scientific knowledge
Many people participate in depression research studies because they want to contribute to advances in understanding and treating depression. Scientific knowledge in depression research is propelled forward only by the close teamwork of psychiatric researchers and individuals with depression.
Study participants often tell us that they also benefit from the gratification of knowing that they are helping others by advancing the field.