In an effort to better meet the needs of chronically underserved patient populations, the Center for Information and Study on Clinical Research Participation (CISCRP), a Boston-based nonprofit organization, has unveiled a new video designed to raise awareness and provide clinical research education to underrepresented communities.
A wide array of surveys and other research efforts has found consistently tepid participation rates in industry-funded clinical trials for members of select minority communities. This despite that fact that research also finds their willingness to participate is relatively high. A 2017 CISCRP study, for example, found that 74% of Hispanics and 80% of African Americans expressed willingness to participate in a clinical trial if asked.
“Many factors are associated with low levels of participation and this new initiative is uniquely designed to address top factors,” noted Ken Getz, CISCRP’s Founder and Board Chair. “Major factors include low levels of awareness about clinical trial activity conducted locally, limited understanding about the personal relevance of clinical trials to public health, and the lack of culturally and community-sensitive outreach and communication.”
The video features a customized recreational vehicle that visited urban centers in Los Angeles and stopped in 10 different communities, culminating in a live AWARE for All educational program. With the support of Janssen Pharmaceuticals, the educational RV’s “Journey to Better Health” reached more than a quarter of a million people. “It’s about going to where the patients are and meeting them in their communities,” said Janssen Vice President and Global Head of Clinical Innovation Andreas Koester.
Since 2003, CISCRP has been conducting live educational events in the U.S. and Europe. The nonprofit is using its multimedia approach to connect people to these programs and has seen a significant jump in attendance. Last year, the organization released a video highlighting its pop-up “MT Pharmacy” days before an AWARE for All event in Newark, N.J.
CISCRP will be looking for sponsors for future events in the coming months to continue to support this innovative educational initiative across more cities in the U.S. and in Europe. The “Journey to Better Health” video will be shared widely with clinical research professionals and the public.
Authors: Michael Causey and CISCRP