FDA In Need of Hispanic Women in Clinical Trials

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Local News

By: Ashmar Mandou

As the U.S. Hispanic population continues to grow, the FDA is in search of more Hispanic women to participate in clinical trials in an effort to better understand what medical treatments and prevention strategies work best for them. “There is so much misinformation that surrounds clinical trials that people run away scared,” said FDA Spanish-Language National Spokesperson Gloria Sanchez-Contreras. “Compared to their counterparts, Hispanic women have a low participation rate for various reasons. Perhaps fear, misinformation, or they may feel overwhelmed. That is why the FDA has decided to launch a Spanish-language website to properly inform Hispanic women on what a clinical trial entails.”

A clinical trial is a research study that helps to show whether a test or treatment works and is safe. Clinical trials come in different forms. Some trials ask you questions about treatments and other trials will have you test out a drug. Is it important to mention, according to Contreras that at any given moment a participant in the trial, which is volunteer based, can quit if she becomes uncomfortable. “Medical products affect men and women differently. Sometimes women have different side effects. It is important that women participate to show if products are safe and work well in both men and women,” said Contreras. Also to note, Contreras advises Hispanic women interested in participating in a trial should ask key questions, such as:

  • the purpose of the study
  • the drugs, tests, and treatments you will receive
  • how long the study will last and how many times you will have to come
  • how they will keep your information private
  • the benefits of the treatments
  • the risks and side effects of the treatments
  • any other treatments or options for people with your disease
  • if the study offers child care or transportation
  • the costs you may have to pay
  • what will your insurance cover

If you would like to learn more, visit www.fda.gov.

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