C4C - Staff FAQs

What is C4C?

Consent for Contact (C4C) is SLaM’s patient research participation register. It is a development of procedures in clinical settings whereby patients are routinely asked for consent for contact and participation in research. This creates a registry for patients who would be willing for researchers to contact them about current or future research conducted in SLaM and the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience (IoPPN).

Who takes the consent?

All SLaM staff with clinical responsibility (i.e. doctors, psychologists, nurses, social workers, occupation therapists, art therapists and allied health professionals) are required to discuss C4C with their patients and take consent.

Where is consent recorded?

C4C is part of everyday clinical activity and consent is recorded on the electronic patient journey system ePJS.

Where can I find C4C information leaflets for patients?

Electronic copies of patient information leaflets are available via our website www.slam.nhs.uk/c4c. A limited number of hard copies will also be distributed to all clinical services. 

When’s the best time to approach a patient about C4C?

The best time to approach a patient will be dependent on the individual clinical presentation. In some services the best time is during initial assessment to the service, whilst for others during ongoing treatment would be best suited. Patients can also be asked about C4C in periods leading up to discharge. Professional clinical judgement is also vital in deciding when to broach C4C with patients.

What is the most important information to tell clients about C4C?

It is important to let patients know that they are not immediately consenting to participate in research at this stage. By signing up to C4C they are only giving permission to be contacted in the future for any research opportunities they may be suitable for. Patients need to understand that when they are contacted for research, they can decide whether they want to be involved or not. The most common reason that patients want to sign up to C4C is that they want to help others with similar conditions.

It is also important to offer patients copy of the information leaflet, which can be found as described above. 

If a client initially says no to joining the C4C register, should I approach them again at a later date?

The initial response of NO is often due to ambivalence. We recommend that patients should be given time to think about the concept of C4C and be re-approached at a later date before their decision is recorded on ePJS.  Of course there will be some patients that are not interested in taking part in research.

What if a patient is lacking capacity?

If a patient lacks capacity in the short term, wait for patient to regain capacity and reassess in the future. If lack of capacity is long term or permanent, patient’s Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) should be consulted to make a decision on behalf of the patient. In the case of no registered LPA, the next of kin should be approached and explain C4C.   See our leaflet for people responsible for another adult (click here) for more information.

Will patients be paid for joining the register?

No. But some of the research studies that invite patients to participate may offer incentives as reimbursement for their time.

Who administers the governance of the register?

The C4C programme has been ethically approved by the National Information Board for Health and Social Care, ref ECC 2-08/2010.

The overall governance of C4C register sits with the Trust Research and Development (R&D) office. The Clinical Record Interactive Search (CRIS) oversight committee oversees and administers the use of C4C register for research recruitment.

In the first instance, researchers looking to use the C4C register to recruit participants should contact the R&D Manager Jenny Liebscher at jennifer.liebscher@kcl.ac.uk or call 020 848 0251

For general C4C enquiries, contact c4c@slam.nhs.uk or call 0203 228 3680.

How will I know when my patient is invited to take part in a study?

Researchers using C4C are required to notify the patient’s care team prior to contacting a patient, so the responsible clinician is aware their patient is being invited to take part in a research study. Researchers are also required to document any contact made with patients on ePJS under ‘Approaches and participation’ on the consent form

Who will have access to the register?

Only researchers who work for or have been approved by the SLaM will have access to the register.

Will the register be shared with third party?

No. All research activities in the C4C register will remain within SLaM IT firewall.

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