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Table 1 SPIRIT 2013 Checklist: Recommended items to address in a clinical trial protocol and related documents

From: A mobile-based pregaming drinking prevention intervention for college students: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial

Section/item Item No Description Addressed on page number
Administrative information
 Title 1 Descriptive title identifying the study design, population, interventions, and, if applicable, trial acronym 1
 Trial registration 2a Trial identifier and registry name. If not yet registered, name of intended registry 3
2b All items from the World Health Organization Trial Registration Data Set 2–3
 Protocol version 3 Date and version identifier 1
 Funding 4 Sources and types of financial, material, and other support 23
 Roles and responsibilities 5a Names, affiliations, and roles of protocol contributors 1
5b Name and contact information for the trial sponsor 23
5c Role of study sponsor and funders, if any, in study design; collection, management, analysis, and interpretation of data; writing of the report; and the decision to submit the report for publication, including whether they will have ultimate authority over any of these activities 23
5d Composition, roles, and responsibilities of the coordinating centre, steering committee, endpoint adjudication committee, data management team, and other individuals or groups overseeing the trial, if applicable (see Item 21a for data monitoring committee) 23
Introduction
 Background and rationale 6a Description of research question and justification for undertaking the trial, including summary of relevant studies (published and unpublished) examining benefits and harms for each intervention 4–9
6b Explanation for choice of comparators 14–15
 Objectives 7 Specific objectives or hypotheses 8–9
 Trial design 8 Description of trial design including type of trial (eg, parallel group, crossover, factorial, single group), allocation ratio, and framework (eg, superiority, equivalence, noninferiority, exploratory)  
9–10
Methods: participants, interventions, and outcomes
 Study setting 9 Description of study settings (eg, community clinic, academic hospital) and list of countries where data will be collected. Reference to where list of study sites can be obtained 8–10
 Eligibility criteria 10 Inclusion and exclusion criteria for participants. If applicable, eligibility criteria for study centres and individuals who will perform the interventions (eg, surgeons, psychotherapists) 10
 Interventions 11a Interventions for each group with sufficient detail to allow replication, including how and when they will be administered 10–15
11b Criteria for discontinuing or modifying allocated interventions for a given trial participant (eg, drug dose change in response to harms, participant request, or improving/worsening disease) Not available
11c Strategies to improve adherence to intervention protocols, and any procedures for monitoring adherence (eg, drug tablet return, laboratory tests) Not available
11d Relevant concomitant care and interventions that are permitted or prohibited during the trial 10
 Outcomes 12 Primary, secondary, and other outcomes, including the specific measurement variable (eg, systolic blood pressure), analysis metric (eg, change from baseline, final value, time to event), method of aggregation (eg, median, proportion), and time point for each outcome. Explanation of the clinical relevance of chosen efficacy and harm outcomes is strongly recommended  
16–18
 Participant timeline 13 Time schedule of enrolment, interventions (including any run-ins and washouts), assessments, and visits for participants. A schematic diagram is highly recommended (see Figure) 25
 Sample size 14 Estimated number of participants needed to achieve study objectives and how it was determined, including clinical and statistical assumptions supporting any sample size calculations 9
 Recruitment 15 Strategies for achieving adequate participant enrolment to reach target sample size 9–10
Methods: Assignment of interventions (for controlled trials)
Allocation:
 Sequence generation 16a Method of generating the allocation sequence (eg, computer-generated random numbers), and list of any factors for stratification. To reduce predictability of a random sequence, details of any planned restriction (eg, blocking) should be provided in a separate document that is unavailable to those who enrol participants or assign interventions 10
 Allocation concealment mechanism 16b Mechanism of implementing the allocation sequence (eg, central telephone; sequentially numbered, opaque, sealed envelopes), describing any steps to conceal the sequence until interventions are assigned Not available
 Implementation 16c Who will generate the allocation sequence, who will enrol participants, and who will assign participants to interventions Not available
 Blinding (masking) 17a Who will be blinded after assignment to interventions (eg, trial participants, care providers, outcome assessors, data analysts), and how Not available
17b If blinded, circumstances under which unblinding is permissible, and procedure for revealing a participant’s allocated intervention during the trial Not available
Methods: data collection, management, and analysis
 Data collection methods 18a Plans for assessment and collection of outcome, baseline, and other trial data, including any related processes to promote data quality (eg, duplicate measurements, training of assessors) and a description of study instruments (eg, questionnaires, laboratory tests) along with their reliability and validity, if known. Reference to where data collection forms can be found, if not in the protocol 12–14
18b Plans to promote participant retention and complete follow-up, including list of any outcome data to be collected for participants who discontinue or deviate from intervention protocols 10
 Data management 19 Plans for data entry, coding, security, and storage, including any related processes to promote data quality (eg, double data entry; range checks for data values). Reference to where details of data management procedures can be found, if not in the protocol 10–11
 Statistical methods 20a Statistical methods for analysing primary and secondary outcomes. Reference to where other details of the statistical analysis plan can be found, if not in the protocol 15–16
20b Methods for any additional analyses (eg, subgroup and adjusted analyses) 15–164
20c Definition of analysis population relating to protocol non-adherence (eg, as randomised analysis), and any statistical methods to handle missing data (eg, multiple imputation)  
15–16
Methods: Monitoring
 Data monitoring 21a Composition of data monitoring committee (DMC); summary of its role and reporting structure; statement of whether it is independent from the sponsor and competing interests; and reference to where further details about its charter can be found, if not in the protocol. Alternatively, an explanation of why a DMC is not needed Not available
21b Description of any interim analyses and stopping guidelines, including who will have access to these interim results and make the final decision to terminate the trial Not available
 Harms 22 Plans for collecting, assessing, reporting, and managing solicited and spontaneously reported adverse events and other unintended effects of trial interventions or trial conduct Not available
 Auditing 23 Frequency and procedures for auditing trial conduct, if any, and whether the process will be independent from investigators and the sponsor Not available
Ethics and dissemination
 Research ethics approval 24 Plans for seeking research ethics committee/institutional review board (REC/IRB) approval 10
 Protocol amendments 25 Plans for communicating important protocol modifications (eg, changes to eligibility criteria, outcomes, analyses) to relevant parties (eg, investigators, REC/IRBs, trial participants, trial registries, journals, regulators) Not available
 Consent or assent 26a Who will obtain informed consent or assent from potential trial participants or authorised surrogates, and how (see Item 32) 10
26b Additional consent provisions for collection and use of participant data and biological specimens in ancillary studies, if applicable Not available
 Confidentiality 27 How personal information about potential and enrolled participants will be collected, shared, and maintained in order to protect confidentiality before, during, and after the trial 9–10
 Declaration of interests 28 Financial and other competing interests for principal investigators for the overall trial and each study site 23
 Access to data 29 Statement of who will have access to the final trial dataset, and disclosure of contractual agreements that limit such access for investigators 23
 Ancillary and post-trial care 30 Provisions, if any, for ancillary and post-trial care, and for compensation to those who suffer harm from trial participation Not available
 Dissemination policy 31a Plans for investigators and sponsor to communicate trial results to participants, healthcare professionals, the public, and other relevant groups (eg, via publication, reporting in results databases, or other data sharing arrangements), including any publication restrictions Not available
31b Authorship eligibility guidelines and any intended use of professional writers Not available
31c Plans, if any, for granting public access to the full protocol, participant-level dataset, and statistical code 23