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The Importance of Minority Participation in Clinical Research

Medical breakthroughs require volunteers who represent diverse communities — Dr. Rodgers and Dr. Eliseo Pérez-Stable tell us why.

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DR. RODGERS: Many advances in the field of medicine come from clinical trials and the volunteers who participate in them. A clinical trial tests a promising drug, medical device, or other treatment in human volunteers.

Hi, I’m Dr. Griffin Rodgers, director of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases at NIH.

My colleague, Dr. Eliseo Pérez-Stable, director of the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities explains:

DR. PÉREZ-STABLE: People from racial and ethnic minority populations are often underrepresented in clinical trials, meaning we don’t have enough volunteers from these communities. This is a problem because some diseases affect minorities more than Whites. We need to understand why. We also need to understand what treatments can help minority populations improve their health.

Medical breakthroughs are only possible with volunteers who represent diverse communities.

DR. RODGERS: Follow us on Twitter @NIDDKgov. This is Dr. Griffin Rodgers with the NIH.

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