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Bringing Diversity to the Forefront of Oncology Clinical Research Initiatives

Targeted Oncology

March 31, 2022

Nichole Tucker


Bringing Diversity to the Forefront of Oncology Clinical Research Initiatives


Inclusion in clinical trials for gender, racial, and ethnic minorities is an oncology-wide effort in the United States. Recent clinical studies and government reports show that inclusion of these minorities in clinical trials is improving in some areas, but still lacking in others. “There are many barriers that exist in clinical trial participation, including access to trials themselves, access to medical practices that have trials, language barriers and need for translation, health literacy barriers, support for completing trial procedures (transportation or center), and historic distrust in practice, Rana McKay, MD, told Targeted Oncology™, in an interview. Multiple experts believe that trials led by initiatives and funded by government and cancer centers of excellence offer the best chance for oncology to improve on inclusion of gender and racial/ethnic minorities in clinical research and improve on disparities in cancer care overall. The Issue With Diversity in Clinical Trials Race/Ethnicity According to McKay, the effort to improve the inclusion of minorities in clinical research must be a systemic one. “We need systematic changes to achieve equality in clinical trials at the level of cancer centers and industry sponsors and support infrastructure to bring trials to patients as opposed to patients coming to trials,” said McKay. A 2019 quantitative survey study collected responses from cancer centers whose accrual patterns matched with The National Minority Quality Forum and Sustainable Healthy Communities Diverse Cancer Communities Working Group developed criteria. Under these criteria, racial and ethnic minorities must represent 10% or more of the patients. The investigators were able to identify 8 cancer centers who met their criteria:1 Academic Centers of Excellence

Community Centers of Excellence