Advancing Health Equity Through Clinical Trial Diversity

Grants and Contracts Details


Clinical research is necessary to ensure that new cancer treatments are safe and effective. Cancer treatments may differ in effectiveness based on patient differences in age, gender, race, lifestyle behavior and genetics. Therefore, having a diverse sample of clinical trial participants ensures that the trial population is representative of the patients who will subsequently use the treatments. Enrolling participants from racial/ethnic minority groups is particularly important because racial/ethnic minorities suffer disproportionately from cancer and are more likely to die when diagnosed with cancer than Whites. Disparities in cancer outcomes is most strikingly seen in breast cancer, where despite the advances in breast cancer treatment, black women are 40% more likely to die than their white counterparts. Yet, nationally only 5% of clinical trial participants are from racial/ethnic minority populations. Increasing enrollment of minorities ensures that all patients benefit from effective cancer treatment. Markey Cancer Center (MCC) is the only NCI-designated cancer center in Kentucky, thus recognized as a clinical leader in cancer diagnosis, treatment and clinical trial research. Yet only 3% of MCC clinical trial participants are Black. This research will explore from the perspective of patients the factors that determine whether a patient participates in a clinical trial or not. Moreover, we will administer a survey to clinicians (e.g. nurses, physicians, trainees) to assess their knowledge and confidence level in having a culturally appropriate discussion with racial/ethnic minority patients about clinical trial enrollment. We will engage MCC stakeholders, e.g. Clinical Research Office, Community Advisory Board, Patient Advisory Group, and the Diversity, Equity and Inclusivity Committee and use an iterative process to develop clinician training and to develop and refine culturally appropriate patient education materials. We will then develop a structured process that ensures that all patients have basic information regarding clinical trial enrollment. We will evaluate the effectiveness of these strategies through the administration of a repeat survey to clinicians and through periodic reports of progress. This project will strengthen the Cancer Centers upcoming application for comprehensive status, which is the highest NCI-designation and will ensure that all Kentuckians benefit from advancements in cancer treatment.
Effective start/end date10/1/219/30/23


  • Markey Cancer Center Foundation: $50,000.00


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