Journal Article

Debrief reports to expedite the impact of qualitative research: Do they accurately capture data from in-depth interviews?

"Debrief reports" (DRs) use structured forms to capture key concepts from in-depth interviews and focus group discussions. They are completed by interviewers and rapidly disseminated to key team members to facilitate identification of potential problems with study procedures, recruitment, or participant engagement and to inform critical adjustments, which can be especially pertinent in intervention studies. Their reliability and validity have yet to be formally evaluated. To assess the accuracy of DRs in capturing key content, raters analyzed a random sub-sample of 20 pairs of de-identified transcripts and their linked DRs from the VOICE-D trial. Analyses generally supported the accuracy of DRs; however, pertinent information from transcripts was occasionally missed or recorded with discrepancies or lack of detail. Longer transcripts and DR sections describing complex topic areas were more likely to involve discrepancies. Recommendations are offered for further research and optimizing the use of DRs.