Cancer Patients Alliance for Clinical Trials & Survivorship



The aim of the Cancer Patients Alliance for Clinical Trials & Survivorship (CancerPACT) initiative of Cancer Patients Alliance is to increase Latino and other minority participation in adult cancer clinical trials. We are concentrating initial efforts in Sacramento, California and Denver, Colorado. The University of California at Davis Cancer Center and the University of Colorado Cancer Center (Denver) will provide cancer trial participation data that will permit us to assess the effectiveness of our efforts.

Participation by women, the elderly, and members of minority groups has historically been very low in cancer clinical trials. This is particularly true of Latino-Americans. They are 15% of the US population, but comprise only 5% of the cancer clinical trial population.

Since clinical trials represent potentially effective treatment options for cancer patients and trial participants are often followed and assessed more regularly than they would be under standard care, under-representation can be a serious restriction in access to care. In addition, genetic differences can be a significant factor in the effect of some drugs, so outcome data are less reliable when major segments of the population are under-represented among trial participants. It is a vital interest to reduce barriers to robust Latino and minority participation in cancer clinical trials.

A major barrier to participation in clinical trials is a lack of access to information about them. We will generate and distribute written materials in Spanish and English about accessing cancer clinical trials. Distribution sites will include hospital, clinic, social service, and physician offices. Materials targeted at the medical community will include a complete list of cancer clinical trials for each city - updated quarterly - and supplemental technical information. This will be made available on cancer-related websites, in hospital newsletters, through direct mailings, and by other means. Press releases will be issued to media outlets and a spokesperson will be available to speak to the media, medical staff and, within the Latino community, to civic and other groups. We will establish a bi-lingual hot line, and air PSA's on local radio and TV outlets - including Spanish language stations.

What we learn from this project is likely to apply to other groups currently under-represented in cancer clinical trials.



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