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We read with interest the comments made by Dr Kilroy1 regarding our study into paramedic workplace violence2 and offer our reply.
As this was a pilot study with no follow-up letter a response rate of 28% was considered reasonable.
If the paramedics saw this study as extremely important the participation rate may have been higher, even though there were a few pages to complete. There was a self-addressed stamped envelope in which to return the questionnaire so there was no cost to the paramedic apart from the time to complete the questionnaire. From past experience paramedic questionnaire return rates have never been very high. The response rate for the study by Coles et al3 was slightly lower than this one. Dr Coles made the comment that general practitioners (GPs) receive a lot of material, including questionnaires, which many get tired of looking at and consequently just ignore. A study by McAvoy and Kaner4 found that a low response rate in general practice research is not uncommon.
The gender response by GPs reported in the paper by Coles et …
Competing interests: None declared.