Page 1: Participant information

We are currently evaluating the Whistleblowers Support Scheme but are also interested in the work-related / work-seeking experiences and activities of whistleblowers who are not participating in the pilot. If you are a NHS whistleblower and NOT participating in the Whistleblowers Support Scheme we would love to hear from you but before you decide it is important that you understand why this questionnaire is being done and what it involves. Please take time to read the following information. Take time to decide if you want to take part or not.

What is the purpose of the questionnaire?

The purpose of this anonymous online questionnaire is to gain broader views of the work-related / work-seeking experiences and issues facing whistleblowers in the NHS. We are also interested in why people did not participate in the pilot and how enquiries about it were managed.  The questionnaire is not about your whistleblowing experience but it is hoped that learning from this evaluation will help to inform and improve recruitment processes and implementation of future schemes.

Do I have to take part?

No. It is up to you to decide whether or not to take part. If you choose to participate anonymously you are still free to withdraw at any time before or during completion of the questionnaire without giving a reason. However, because the questionnaire is anonymous, you cannot withdraw after your responses have been submitted. If you choose to include contact details you may withdraw at any time up to the completion of the first draft of the evaluation report. A decision to withdraw will not affect your rights or any future support you receive.

What will happen to me if I take part?

The questionnaire asks about your work related experiences, activities and support needs. We are also interested in understanding why you did not apply for the programme. The questionnaire should take around 30 minutes to complete but this depends on how much you wish to write. Once we have received responses the information will be analysed thematically and used in a report for the NHS (and potentially other publications and presentations). We may also use direct quotes from open text comments but you will not be identifiable. We hope to talk to a small random sample of respondents so if you wish to provide contact details at the end of the questionnaire we may contact you again in four-six months time for a telephone interview. Questionnaires will be securely stored on password protected computers for five years after completion in accordance with LJMU policy and the Data Protection Act 1998.

Are there any risks / benefits involved?

There are no risks or benefits involved. However, your participation in the evaluation will help to inform the implementation of future support schemes. If for some reason you become uncomfortable or distressed during the questionnaire you can simply terminate the questionnaire without needing to submit or explain. Your Freedom to Speak Up Guardian should be contacted if additional support and advice is needed.

Will my taking part in the study be kept confidential?

Yes. We take confidentiality very seriously. We do not need your name or any personal information. However, if you wish to be considered for interview, please provide your preferred contact details at the end of the questionnaire. Again, this will be securely stored and not shared with anyone outside the LJMU evaluation team.

This project has received ethical approval from LJMU’s Research Ethics Committee: 17/NAH/019

Contact Details of Evaluators:

D.T.Greenop@ljmu.ac.uk 0151 231 4033

P.B.Clarke@ljmu.ac.uk 0151 231 4450

If you have any concerns regarding your involvement in this project, please discuss these with the researcher in the first instance.  If you wish to make a complaint, please contact researchethics@ljmu.ac.uk and your communication will be re-directed to an independent person as appropriate.