According to a new study from the University of Missouri (MU) School of Medicine, people of color, those with higher incomes, and those in the younger age are more likely to participate in clinical trials during their cancer treatment.
The study analyzed data collected from the CDC (Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System) survey by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This is an annual national telephone survey designed to collect health-related data from adults in the United States. The survey years selected included the question: “Have you participated in a clinical trial as part of your cancer treatment?”
The analysis of 20,053 respondents showed an average participation rate in clinical studies of 6.51%. Among 17,600 white respondents, the participation was 6.24%; Participation was 11% among 445 Hispanic respondents. and among 943 black respondents, the turnout was 8.27%.
“This study informs our understanding of who is participating in cancer clinical trials,” said Dr. med. Lincoln Sheets, Assistant Professor at the MU School of Medicine. “We found that people of color were more likely to participate in clinical trials of cancer than white people with cancer when they considered other demographic factors. It could be that in previous studies, the effects of income, gender, or age mixed up the real picture. “
Sheets collaborated on the study with Shelby Meyer, a student at the MU School of Medicine. Their study was published by the journal Contemporary communication of clinical studies.
According to Sheets, the analysis also found that individuals earning more than the national median household income of $ 50,000 per year and adolescents were more likely to participate in clinical trials during cancer treatment.
“Overall, the results of this study confirm that there are sociodemographic differences in clinical trials of cancer, which suggests that the current system is flawed,” Sheets said. “We need to reduce the financial barriers to participation, improve the logistical accessibility of clinical trials on cancer, and ease the restrictions on admission of patients with comorbidities.”
Sheets said that improving access to transportation, childcare and health insurance would remove some of the structural and logistical barriers that prevent people from participating in clinical trials on cancer.
Edited by Gary Cramer