STI/HIV/AIDS Risks Related to Heterosexual Behaviours of Singaporean Men: Survey Phase

Participant Information Sheet

1. Project title: STI/HIV/AIDS Risks Related to Heterosexual Behaviours of Singaporean Men: Survey Phase

 

2. Principal investigator: Associate Professor Wong Mee Lian

            Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health, NUS

            Email: ephwml@nus.edu.sg

            Phone: 6516 4965

Co-investigators

·         Mandy Govender, Deputy Director, Communicable Disease, Health Promotion Board

Email: Mandy_Govender@hpb.gov.sg

Phone: 9159 9876

·         Lit Fai Chan, Manager, Communicable Disease Education Department, Health Promotion

          Board

               Email: Chan_Lit_Fai@hpb.gov.sg

Phone: 6435 3177         

3. What is the purpose of the study?

You are invited to participate in a research study. This information sheet provides you with information about the research study. The Principal Investigator is Associate Professor Wong Mee Lian from the Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health, National University of Singapore. Please read the information below before deciding to take part in this survey.

This study involves an anonymous survey. In Singapore, increasing number of men are getting HIV and other STDs (diseases that are transmitted by sexual intercourse) through unprotected sex with sex workers and casual sex with women. The purpose of this study is to help us understand your sexual behaviours, your attitudes and beliefs about condom use, and your health-seeking behaviours, meaning, things you do to take care of yourself. The knowledge we gain from this survey will help us plan health programmes to protect Singaporean men from getting HIV and STI infections.

4.1. Who can participate in this research?

To participate in the study, you must be between 21 to 70 years old, male, Singapore citizen or a permanent resident.

In addition, you must have visited brothels or entertainment establishments, and you must have had sex with female sex workers, or casual partners (non-paying partners who are not your wife or longstanding girl friends) in the past year.  

4.2. What is the expected duration of my participation?

 The survey will take about 20 minutes.

4.3. What is the duration of this research?

 This quantitative study will take 6 months to complete.

5. What is the approximate number of participants involved?

A total of 300 men who have sought sex through the Internet will be invited to participate in this survey, which is part of a larger research project which investigates STI/HIV risk behaviours among men from different venues in Singapore. The whole research study aims to study 1200 men in Singapore.

6. What will be done if I take part in this research?

You will be asked to complete a questionnaire that includes a series of questions about demographic information. After that, you will be asked about your sexual behaviours with your regular partner (wife/girlfriend), casual partners, and/or commercial sex partners in the past year. After sexual history, you will be asked to complete questions on your health-seeking behaviours.

Please take time to read and understand the information provided in this sheet. You may choose to take part in the study after you have understood the purpose and procedure of the study.

Please complete the survey ONLY once

7. How will my privacy and the confidentiality of my research records be protected?

Your name, IC number and place of work will NOT be recorded in the questionnaire.  We will not ask for your name, address, or any contact numbers. However, we need to collect your email address, for the purpose of processing your compensation. Your email address will be deleted once it has been sent to the independent third party (refer to no. 10 for further details).

No one will have access to the database except the research team. The database will be kept confidential and will not make publicly available.

8. What are the possible discomforts and risks for participants?

We are conducting this online survey to collect data on your health and sexual behaviours. You will be asked some sensitive and personal questions regarding your sexual encounters with casual partners or commercial sex workers. You may feel uncomfortable when answering some of these questions but you don’t have to answer them if you don’t want to.

9. What is the compensation for any injury?

No injury is expected as this study involves only a survey.

10. Will there be reimbursement for participation?

Yes. You will receive $15 worth of credit from http://www.liveoffcoupon.com/ that you can use to purchase any items from the website, as compensation for your time and participation in the survey.

 

11. What are the possible benefits to me and to others?

There is no direct benefit to you by participating in this research. The knowledge gained will provide very useful information for planning and implementing appropriate health promotion programmes to prevent and control the spread of HIV and sexually transmitted diseases in Singapore.

12. Can I refuse to participate in this research?

Yes, you can. Your participation in this research is voluntary and it is completely up to you to join the study. You have the right to refuse to answer any specific questions. You can withdraw from the study at any time during the interview and you will not have to give any reasons.

If you wish to withdraw from the research study at any time, you may inform the Principal Investigator, Associate Professor Wong Mee Lian (full name and contact number as listed above) and all of your data collected will be discarded one year after the study is completed.

 

13. Who should I call if I have any questions or problems?

If you have any questions regarding the study, or you would like to hear more about the study, please contact Associate Professor (Dr) Wong Mee Lian, Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health, National University of Singapore at telephone: 65164965 or at ephwml@nus.edu.sg.

For an independent opinion regarding the research and the rights of research participants, you may contact a staff member of the National University of Singapore Institutional Review Board (Attn: Mr Chan Tuck Wai, at telephone 6516 1234 or email at irb@nus.edu.sg).

 

You can print out this information for your records.

 

I have read the information provided above. I am free not to join this study, or to stop being in this study at any point.