What is it about?

This article discusses how unequal distributions of power have hindered clinical research for underrepresented populations. Three recommendations are offered for how to share power equitably between researchers and potential participants to ensure culturally sensitive, patient-centered approaches to research recruitment. Importantly, VA investigators and veteran research partners actively collaborated to write this article.

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Why is it important?

Most clinical research is conducted on predominantly White samples, which has contributed to disparities in access to empirically supported treatment options for individuals from racial and ethnic minority groups. Successful recruitment for clinical trials is a critical part of expanding knowledge on effective treatments and improving the quality of healthcare for underrepresented populations. An understanding of power dynamics and how researchers can equitably include members of historically marginalized communities is essential to progress these research efforts. This article models the importance of active collaborations between investigators and members from the populations of focus to advance research.


Me and my co-authors are very proud of this article and believe it offers 3 practical recommendations to make clinical research recruitment more culturally sensitive and patient-centered. We hope this inspires future collaborations between investigators and members from the populations of focus in clinical research.

Lauren Rodriguez
Corporal Michael J. Crecenz VA Medical Center

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Three Lessons Learned About Power and Improving Recruitment of Underrepresented Populations in Clinical Trials, Psychiatric Services, February 2024, American Psychiatric Association,
DOI: 10.1176/appi.ps.20230189.
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