CHiP Spearheads a Novel Patient Recruitment Strategy for Research Studies

The recruitment of underrepresented populations is a common challenge for research studies, partly due to inadequate outreach, lack of awareness, and mistrust of the medical system. However, representation of minority populations is essential to the quality and applicability of the research findings. To help improve not only the efficiency but also the scope of research studies, CHiP has designed a new, pragmatic recruitment approach to identifying a diverse set of eligible participants. This novel recruitment approach was recently highlighted in a research article in January’s issue of Applied Clinical Informatics. A number of members of CHiP’s staff contributed to the article, including Lindsay Zimmerman (Lead Author), Dr. Satyender Goel, Charon Gladfelter, Lindsey Kane, and CHiP’s Director, Dr. Abel Kho.

Whereas conventional research studies typically occur in the health care setting, CHiP’s new recruitment model takes a more expansive approach, looking to the community to identify participants for recruitment. It also simplifies screening and follow-up with a workflow that links patient identifiers back to their clinical records, allowing for verification of participant eligibility. This means that, while follow up can be conducted by directly reaching out to a patient, researchers can also query the patient’s electronic health record (EHR) data for information.

This linkage of a participant back to the clinical site is a unique and integral component of the new recruitment model, and relies on data hubs from participating clinical sites. For example, CHiP’s ADAPTABLE research project, which compares the effectiveness of different doses of aspirin in preventing myocardial infarction and stroke among individuals with coronary heart disease, utilizes data gathered by PCORnet, a distributed research network. Through CHiP’s new patient recruitment model, ADAPTABLE and other research projects are conducted with decreased burden on practitioners and participants, as well as improved dissemination and adoption of research findings among communities.

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