Jim Zhong, M.D.

Funded by Hooters of America, LLC

Minority patients are often underrepresented in clinical trials, data from which we derive our standard of care. Due to the underrepresentation of these patients, the clinical outcomes of treatments may be inappropriately extrapolated for these patients. Barriers to participation for minority patients include unconscious bias by medical practitioners, patient distrust of the medical enterprise, as well as language and medical literacy deficits. Ideally, clinical trials should aim for enrollment of ethnic composition that mirrors the proportion of patients affected by a particular cancer stage.

To address these deficits to equitable trial enrollment, we propose a supplementation of the traditional consent process to be tailored for the purposes of increasing minority enrollment. To this end, we propose to use video-based education tools using virtual-reality technology and to enhance our patient navigator program to increase minority recruitment an ongoing breast clinical trial. The use of virtual-reality videos will allow patients to see the environment in which they would receive treatment to reduce anxiety with an otherwise unfamiliar treatment such as radiation therapy.

We propose to employ the above recruitment strategies in an ongoing Phase I/II clinical trial aimed at investigating the safety and efficacy of concurrent cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK) 4/6 inhibitors with radiosurgery in women with advanced hormone receptor positive breast cancers with brain metastases. The goals of this study are to (1) improve minority clinical trial participation and to (2) improve the optimal communication strategies specific to this population that can be employed to help increase minority clinical trial enrollment.

Location: Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University - Georgia
Proposal: Health care disparities in patients with advanced breast cancer with brain metastases: Increasing minority access to clinical trials through the use of optimal communication strategies
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