To describe the effectiveness of recruitment strategies used for a randomised trial of a fall prevention program.Methods
Community-residing persons (n = 310) aged 70 years or older and at risk of falling were recruited using promotional materials, health professional referrals, media, community presentations, mail outs, and friends/relatives. Mail and telephone recruitment strategies were able to be compared to actual recruitment yields, with costs reported for each.Results
Mail outs by organisations had response rates between 3.1 and 7.7%, with recruitment yields between 1.8 and 4.4%. Local media editorials were low cost and useful. Gender and physical status of participants varied according to the recruitment method, with multisources producing a reasonably representative sample.Conclusions
Databases and mail outs using personalised letters were the most effective recruitment strategies for a community-based preventive program. This study contributes to the expanding evidence of the kinds of recruitment that are more effective, considering the context of the study and the intervention.