If you needed an organ transplant would you have one? The effect of reciprocity priming and mode of delivery on organ donor registration intentions and behaviour.O'Carroll RE, Haddow L, et al.
British Journal of Health Psychology 2017; 22(3): 577-588.
To examine the effects on organ donation intentions and behaviour of a reciprocity prime in which participants are asked whether they would accept a donated organ, and whether any differences observed are dependent on the mode of delivery.
Two separate studies were conducted whereby participants not currently registered as organ donors were randomly assigned to either the reciprocity prime or control condition. Prime participants completed a short questionnaire including a priming question & two questions regarding intention to register as an organ donor. The control group for study 1 completed a similar questionnaire with a neutral filler question in place of the prime. Study 2 control participants completed only the two questions regarding intention to register as an organ donor.
All participants were aged > 18 years. Study 1 included 140 participants (83 face-to-face and 57 online), while study 2 included 518 participants (336 face-to-face and 182 online).
Measured outcomes included the intention to register as an organ donor and behavioural measures of organ donor registration such as accepting a leaflet or viewing a link on organ donation.
This article reports on two studies investigating the effect of reciprocity priming and mode of delivery on organ donor registration intentions and behaviour. In the first study 140 adults who were not currently registered organ donors participated in a face-to-face study (n=83) or online study (n=57). Participants were recruited from the university campus and local workplaces through social media for the online study resulting in a relatively young population. Participants were randomised online to prime (prime question was “I would accept an organ from a deceased donor in order to save my own life”) and control (control question was “Organ donation is important”) conditions. The second study had a similar design (n=518) but in addition aimed to determine the likelihood of obtaining further information regarding organ donation. Participants in the second study were recruited through social media, other online resources, local workplaces and several towns and cities and all ages were well represented. Participants in the prime conditions showed greater intentions to register as organ donors. As the authors conclude, this study offers a basis for further research into increasing organ donation.