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ResearchMatch (for Researchers)

What is this resource?


ResearchMatch is an NIH-funded, national registry that brings together researchers and 144,000+ volunteers who are interested in learning more about research studies. Used nationally by over 7,700 researchers this novel platform has been helpful in recruiting research participants across many research areas, and has been particularly useful for research involving rare disease, surveys, and healthy volunteers.

Using a secure, could-based platform researchers may use this tool for the following purposes:

Feasibility Analysis

Using ResearchMatch's Feasibility Analysis tool, researchers can assess the quantity and accessibility of volunteers that match specific inclusion/exclusion criteria. Results of a feasibility analysis are provided in an aggregate format, without individual identifier information.

Searchable criteria include (but are not limited to):

  • Geographic factors (distance from institution)
  • Age
  • Gender
  • Physical characteristics (height, weight, BMI)
  • Race and Ethnicity
  • Health status (specific diagnosed diseases and conditions)*
  • Medication history
  • Twin status*

*Absence of diagnoses is also captured for researchers seeking healthy volunteers.

Please note, the ResearchMatch Feasibility Analysis tool can be used without IRB approval. Simply register and you’re all set!

Participant Recruitment

After registering (Note: Be sure to select "Researchers" on the header menu) for ResearchMatch's Feasibility Analysis tool, researchers will also have the ability to go a step further by creating a study-specific profile and then send an IRB-approved introductory recruitment message to eligible volunteers via ResearchMatch's secure email portal. If interested, a volunteer can respond as such via the portal and their contact information will immediately be forwarded to the researcher. If not interested, the volunteer will be promptly removed for the study-specific anonymous contact list and can no longer be contacted by the researcher for that particular study. Please see below for more information.

Securing Approval

All researchers that wish to use ResearchMatch's Recruitment tool must first receive approval from the Children's National Hospital IRB (as well as their external IRB of Record if applicable). Additionally, approval of the introductory message must be approved by Children's National PR & Marketing department.

To request approval for Recruitment, researchers must first complete and submit to the IRB the “ResearchMatch Approval Request Form.” This form must include the study-specific recruitment message which will be sent to matched volunteers. Information identifying the study investigator(s) and how to contact recruitment coordinators must be omitted from this message, to retain communication pathways within ResearchMatch.

Once completed the form must be forwarded to the established PR & Marketing representative via email and then to the IRB via IRBear. The final approved message will then be uploaded in the ResearchMatch portal.

Identifying and Communicating with Potential Volunteers

Researchers search the ResearchMatch database to assess how many volunteers meet eligibility criteria, view non-identifying descriptions of potential matches, and then add the final approved approved recruitment message to their study profile. The message can then be sent to as many or as little eligible individuals as the research desires.

ResearchMatch will automatically send the study recruitment message to matched volunteers to inform them about a new opportunity for which they may be eligible. Once individuals respond with permission to be contacted for that study, personal contact information is immediately made available to the researcher within the secure ResearchMatch system.

For more information on the Recruitment process please view the ResearchMatch Starter Guide.

ResearchMatch is a Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) initiative funded by the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Who can use this resource?

All Children’s National Hospital and George Washington University research faculty and staff can utilize ResearchMatch.

How much does access to this resource cost?

ResearchMatch is offered at no cost.  To see the cost of other CTSI-CN resources, please visit SPARC Request.

How do I access this resource?

To register for ResearchMatch please visit: ResearchMatch for Researchers

To request direct assistance or information regarding ResearchMatch, please register for a “Recruitment Strategy and Support" Consultation via SPARC Request.

Who should I contact for more information?

For more inforamtion, please contact our Clinical Research Navigators at

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