Race & Physicial Referral to Clinical Trials

Here’s an interesting study from the Journal of the National Medical Association: Factors Influencing Physician Referrals of Patients to Clinical Trials. [PDF file] Here’s a brief, incomplete summary…

Rationale for the study:

Including minorities and particularly, elderly minorities, in medical research is particularly important in light of evidence of potential racial and ethnic differences in response to treatment. Yet a common barrier to the development of new knowledge for medical problems affecting racially and ethnically diverse populations is the ability to enroll diverse patients in research studies.

How they did it:

We surveyed 200 physicians from areas …with ≥40% African Americans or Latinos. Physicians were asked about attitudes toward research, likelihood of referring patients to PD trials and past research participation, and administered the Trust in Medical Researchers Scale.

The authors’ main conclusion:

Study results emphasize the importance of developing a trusting relationship with local physicians if investigators expect these physicians to refer their patients to clinical trials. The trust-related barriers for minority-serving physicians, regardless of their own race/ethnicity, seem to mirror the trust-related issues for their minority patients.

~ by Nancy Walton on November 23, 2008.

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