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partner organization were identified on materials as program sponsors. An example of the key recruitment messages used can be found in the appendix.

Participants were offered $50 stipends as compensation for their time and to help cover any out-of-pocket costs of attending the session. Stipends also likely facilitated the recruitment process by providing a small incentive to attend.6

Agenda and Tools

The IOM planning committee developed a set of program materials to run 4-hour sessions at all three venues.7 These materials were designed to provide participants with the background and tools they would need to engage in informed discussions about alternative strategies for facilitating access to antivirals in a flu pandemic. The main elements of the agenda can be found in Box 2.

Major Structural Elements of Each Public Engagement Workshop

Introductory Exercise: Small-group table discussions to break the ice, establish ground rules, and introduce participants to the facilitated discussion and report-out method. All participants were invited to state briefly why they decided to attend the community conversation and to identify their greatest hope and greatest fear should a flu pandemic strike.

Audience Response System (ARS) Presurvey: A series of questions about participant demographics and other relevant characteristics, followed by a series of opinion statements related to the proposed alternative strategies for delivering antivirals during a severe pandemic. Participants used electronic response devices (handheld keypads) to respond to questions and statements that were both projected as slides and read aloud to accommodate participants with low vision


6In Fort Benton, stipends were not mentioned in the recruitment process; participants first learned of the stipends in the confirmation materials they received after registration. In Los Angeles, stipends were offered during recruitment, but participants were informed at the start of the session that their receipt of the stipend did not require them to stay or participate in the entire session.

7The agenda and tools are based on the IOM’s model and method for engaging the public on “crisis standards of care” guidelines for prioritizing the allocation of scarce medical resources in pandemics and other major disasters (Institute of Medicine, Crisis standards of care: A systems framework for catastrophic disaster response [Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, 2012]).

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