Recruiting Minorities In Clinical Trials

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Studies assess effectiveness of efforts to recruit minorities in clinical trials.

  • "Recruiting Diverse Patients to a Breast Cancer Risk Communication Trial --Waiting Rooms Can Improve Access," Journal of the National Medical Association:Researchers examined a specific health research recruitment effort toassess potential reasons for low participation among underservedpopulations and whether certain interventions would boostparticipation. For the study, researcher Joann Bodurtha of thedepartment of Human Geneticsat Virginia Commonwealth University and colleagues examined efforts torecruit women in a breast cancer risk communication trial. Researchersrecruited women who were waiting for health services at four VCU Health Systemwomen's health clinics from 2003 and 2005. Recruiters made 2,733patients recruitment attempts, resulting in 884 patients who were ableto complete a baseline survey about their breast cancer risk beforeleaving the clinic. Participants cited a lack of time, lack of interestor concerns about comprehension issues, such as hearing impairment orlanguage skills, as reasons for declining to participate in the study.Researchers concluded, "Despite the potential barriers of researchrecruitment, a financially challenged population and the specificcharacteristics of any particular clinical setting, this work justifiesfurther investigation of a waiting room model for clinical trialrecruitment and risk communication" (Bodurtha et al., JNMA, August 2007).
  • "Reducing Liver Cancer Disparities: A Community-Based Hepatitis-B Prevention Program for Asian-American Communities," JNMA:The study assesses knowledge of hepatitis B among Asian-Americans innine Montgomery County, Md., communities, before and after a hepatitisB educational program. Chinese-, Filipino-, Korean- andVietnamese-Americans have a higher risk of developing liver diseasecaused by complications from hepatitis B. The study, conducted byresearcher Chiehwen Hsu of the University of Maryland Department of Public and Community Health and School of Public Policyand colleagues, involved 807 Asian-Americans who participated in ahepatitis B prevention program between 2005 and 2006. Participantsattended culturally tailored lectures, received blood screenings forthe disease and completed self-administered tests before and after thestudy that evaluated their knowledge of hepatitis B prevention.Participants' knowledge of hepatitis B prevention improved afterreceiving the information, researchers said. "The findings providepotential directions for focusing preventive interventions on at-riskAsian communities to reduce liver cancer disparities," according to thestudy (Hsu et el., JNMA, August 2007).

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