Expanding Clinical Trials Designs to Extend Equitable Hearing Care

Rolvix Patterson, Marissa Schuh, Matthew L. Bush, Carrie L. Nieman, Samantha Kleindienst Robler, Susan D. Emmett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Clinical trials are critically important to translate scientific innovations into clinical practice. Hearing healthcare depends on this translational approach to improve outcomes and quality of life. Across the spectrum of healthcare, there is a lack of diverse participation in clinical trials, a failure to recruit and retain underrepresented and underserved populations, and an absence of rigorous dissemination and implementation of novel research to broader populations. The field of hearing healthcare research would benefit from expanding the types and designs of clinical trials that extend hearing healthcare and novel interventions to diverse populations, as well as emphasizing trials that evaluate factors influencing how that care can be delivered effectively. This article explores the following: (1) the role, value, and design types of clinical trials (randomized controlled, cluster randomized, stepped wedge, and mixed methods) to address health equity; (2) the importance of integrating community and stakeholder involvement; and (3) dissemination and implementation frameworks and designs for clinical trials (hybrid trial designs). By adopting a broader range of clinical trial designs, hearing healthcare researchers may be able to extend scientific discoveries to a more diverse population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23S-32S
JournalEar and Hearing
Issue numberSupplement 1
StatePublished - Jul 1 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
C.L.N. is a volunteer board member of the nonprofits, Access HEARS, and the Hearing Loss Association of America. M.L.B. is a consultant for MED-EL and Stryker and has received research funding from Advanced Bionics. Funding sources include PCORI AD-1602-34571, R01DC017770, and R33DC015062.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Lippincott Williams and Wilkins. All rights reserved.


  • Disparities
  • Ear and hearing care
  • Randomaized trials
  • Undeserved

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • Speech and Hearing


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