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Tackling diversity in clinical trials may require wider ‘aperture’

By Sarah White, Brigham & Women’s Hospital and Harvard via The Association of Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP)

While it’s obviously laudable to work to advance clinical trial diversity both in terms of patient population and workforce, it’s also important to widen the “aperture” to address a wide range of underserved populations, including the elderly, rural, people with disabilities, under/un-insured, and others, says Sarah White, executive director at the Multi-Regional Clinical Trials (MRCT) Center of Brigham & Women’s Hospital and Harvard.

The MRCT Center has been active for more than five years raising awareness of the fact that clinical trials “haven’t been reflective our population,” especially as evidenced by FDA Snapshots from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) over the past seven years or so, White says. “We have to find ways we can make a difference,” she adds.

In 2018, the MRCT Center hosted a multi-stakeholder group to address the barriers—both big and small—slowing the successful enrollment and retention to a wide range of patient populations. “Our working model involves collaborating with multi-stakeholder teams to identify challenges and deliver ethical, actionable, and practical solutions for the global clinical trial enterprise,” White says. Read more …