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Children's Hospital study finds African-Americans more distrusting of research than whites
Date:2/3/2009

hat financial and other incentives would only be moderately effective in increasing participation. As a medical community, we need to develop better strategies for overcoming the distrust of African-American parents to help achieve adequate participation of African-American children in clinical research."

As compared with white parents, African-American parents:

  • More often reported distrust of medical research, when questions assessing trust were combined and analyzed (67 percent vs. 50 percent)
  • More often believed that physicians prescribe medications as a way of experimenting on unknowing patients (40 percent vs. 28 percent)
  • Were more likely to believe that medical research involves too much risk to the participant (46.8 percent vs. 26 percent), that physicians will not make full disclosures regarding their child's participation (24.6 percent vs. 10 percent) and that research participants would be favored and receive better medical care (48.6 percent vs. 28 percent)

Education level also was associated with distrust, with high distrust scores among 74 percent of those with less than a high school education vs. 44 percent of college graduates. However, race remained associated with higher levels of distrust even after the researchers controlled for education, with African-American parents being two times more likely of being distrusting compared with white parents.

"Race matters," Dr. Thomas said. "It is important for the biomedical research community to acknowledge that African-American distrust toward medicine and research is not irrational; on the contrary, it reflects the legitimate discontent of far too many black families who experience racial discrimination when seeking medical care along with the clear and convincing evidence of racial disparities in their health status compared with whites'. The experience of discrimination is not limited to one individual or one generation but is passed on through word of
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Contact: Marc Lukasiak
marc.lukasiak@chp.edu
412-692-7919
Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh
Source:Eurekalert

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