The success of the BC Generations Project depends on the generosity of BC residents, aged 35-69, who are willing to give a small amount of their time to contribute to disease prevention efforts in the future. While the Project is unlikely to benefit participants directly, their children and grandchildren may benefit from the outcomes of thousands of research studies that will draw on this massive collection of high-quality, highly-secure health data.
We use a number of methods to raise awareness and recruit eligible BC residents for the BC Generations Project. These include word of mouth (through participants, large employers, and BC physicians), brochure distribution, bulk mail and media stories.
The BC Generations Project is also randomly contacting BC residents directly through the mail, using commercial directories. These directories comply with all the Canadian consumer privacy regulations, including the federal Personal Information Protection and Electronic Document Act, and the BC Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act.
The information supplied through these directories consists of names, addresses and telephone numbers. We have no access to any additional information, including medical records, of anyone we contact.
To join the Project, participants simply need to complete a consent form and a baseline questionnaire about their health and lifestyle. There are two options for doing this:
- Participants can complete their consent form and questionnaire online on a secure web page; OR
- Participants can request a mailed participant package, which contains a consent form and questionnaire that they can complete and mail back to us.
At a minimum, all participants provide the following baseline information:
- Questions about their health and lifestyle, including occupation and residential information, diet, physical activity, smoking, drinking, and other habits. They also provide information about their family and personal medical history.
- Their height, waist and hip measurements. They also record their weight.
Participants may also choose to book an appointment at a BC Generations Project assessment centre , where further baseline body measurements can be taken, such as bone density and percent body fat. Participants who visit the assessment centre will receive a record of these measurements for their information.
In the future, participants may also be contacted for more information, or to provide blood and urine samples.