Received: 12 May 2021
Accepted: 25 November 2021
First Online: 22 December 2021
: Ethical approvals were sought and granted from the King’s College London Biomedical & Health Sciences, Dentistry, Medicine and Natural & Mathematical Sciences Research Ethics Sub-Committee [ref:- HR-19/20-19455]. An interview method was utilised in accordance with relevant guidelines and regulations, with all interview schedules (Additional files InternalRef removed, InternalRef removed, and InternalRef removed) having been approved by the Research Ethics Committee. Informed consent was obtained from all study participants electronically either where they completed and signed consent forms as a PDF and returned them to the researcher via e-mail; or where participants printed, manually completed and signed consent forms, and scanned them back to the researcher via e-mail. Where neither electronic method was possible, a verbal consent was employed with the researcher recorded a reading of the consent form with replies from the participant confirming consent recorded on an electronic copy of the consent form at the beginning of the interview. How participants provided consent was be recorded and where verbal consent was given, a copy was sent to the participant as well as being retained on the study file. Those who completed electronic consent forms retained their copy with the e-mailed version being saved on the study file. All methods of consent were approved by the Research Ethics Committee as pragmatic ways of conducting qualitative research virtually during the COVID-19 pandemic due to traditional ‘wet signature’ consent not being possible in light of lockdown restrictions. All participants were also made aware of their right to withdraw.
: Not applicable.
: No conflicts of interest or competing interests have been declared by any author.