Tracking strategies involving fourteen sources for locating a transient study sample: Parents of sudden infant death syndrome infants and control infants

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Strategies involving 14 sources were used to locate 230 parents of sudden infant death syndrome infants who died in Southern California between 1989 and 1992 and 255 parents of healthy, living infants matched by birth hospital, birth date, race, and sex. The sample consisted of adults of reproductive age residing in Southern California. After an event of sudden infant death, many parents moved without a forwarding address; only their names, last known address, and the infant's race, birth date, and sex were available. There was no access to birth certificates, obstetric or pediatric medical records, parents' Social Security numbers, or parents' birth dates. The most successful tracking sources for case parents were the Department of Motor Vehicles, postal service, reverse directory and neighbors, private investigator, and California Medicaid services. For control parents, the post office, Department of Motor Vehicles, and Folks Finders proved the most helpful. Using a combination of the 14 sources achieved an adequate sample size.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)98-101
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Journal of Epidemiology
Volume144
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 1996
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Social Security
  • case-control studies
  • epidemiologic methods
  • follow-up studies
  • patient dropouts
  • patient identification systems
  • selection bias
  • sudden infant death

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology

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