We conducted a pilot study of an intervention to facilitate patients’ agenda setting in clinical consultations. The primary aim of the study was to test the feasibility of running the randomized controlled trial. A secondary objective was to assess the extent to which patient and public involvement (PPI) could contribute to the process of qualitative data analysis (QDA).Aims
To describe a novel approach to including patient partners in QDA; to illustrate the kinds of contribution that patient partners made to QDA in this context; and to propose a characterization of a process by which patient involvement can contribute to knowledge production.Methods
Six patient and public representatives were supported to contribute to data analysis via a range of modalities. During a series of QDA workshops, experienced research staff role-played consultations and interviews, and provided vignettes. Workshop data and PPI diaries were analysed using thematic discourse analysis.Results
We characterized a process of thesis, antithesis and synthesis. This PPI group contributed to the rigour and validity of the study findings by challenging their own and the researchers’ assumptions, and by testing the emerging hypotheses. By training PPI representatives to undertake qualitative data analysis, we transformed our understanding of doctor–patient consultations.Conclusions
This research required changes to our usual research practices but was in keeping with the objective of establishing meaningful patient involvement for a future definitive trial. This work was informed by concepts of critical humility, and a process of knowledge production enabled via the construction of a knowledge space.