Table 3: Community’s Perception on Health Sciences Research.

ThemesSubthemesRepresentative statements

Positive attitude Participants in general commented that research could bring potential benefits to the community at large“We reflect our opinions so that the government can have improvement. So there is no harm in joining the survey. Any social needs and problems can be improved upon. If you have a concern, just express it so that the government can get better. It is a benefit to everyone.”
There exist needs to explore culturally specific research tailored toward understudied ethnic minority population such as Chinese“If it is something to research on life saving methods, then there is no fear to talk about it. Because the Western doctor himself has not experienced that type of illness. So the doctor does not know what it is like. This is a good thing to talk about it and there should be no concern.”

Negative perception and future recommendation Concerns toward research include not knowing the relevant outcomes and benefits and fear of disclosing privacy“You need to provide the participants with instructions after the survey and let them know the benefits of the participation in understanding the signs and symptoms of the disease. With clear directions, the number of participants will increase.” “Yet people’s concern is that after the survey, their privacy will be taken away.”
It is suggested that through word of mouth and health forums it will be best to involve the community in research“We can advertise in the newspapers. We can request people to offer their opinions. Then we can collect their comments and information.” “This ‘word of mouth’ type of advertisement can be spread through the community organizations.” “Promote more activities. Let people have more contacts. Now there are more Mandarin speaking people from the Mainland. Previously there were few.” “In terms of language, more people speak Mandarin. It would be great like you who can speak in both dialects.” “To do that we have to be relevant to the community’s needs. Otherwise it would turn into hearsays and chatters.”

Note: Table presents a summary of findings from focus group discussions among participants.