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Physicians should declare financial incentives for recruiting minority ethnic patients into clinical trials

BMJ 2014; 348 doi: (Published 07 May 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;348:g2985
  1. Arch G Mainous III, professor
  1. 1Department of Health Services Research, Management and Policy and Department of Community Health and Family Medicine, University of Florida, PO Box 100195, Gainesville, FL 32610, USA
  1. arch.mainous{at}

Mistrust may explain why non-white people are under-represented in clinical trials despite apparent willingness. Arch G Mainous III suggests doctors who recruit such patients should

declare their interests

The National Institutes of Health in the United States and others recognise the importance of adequate representation of non-white ethnic minorities in clinical trials and require that investigators outline a recruitment plan in grant proposals.1 Recruiting adequate numbers of ethnic minority people into trials is also important in countries such as the United Kingdom, where funding agencies do not currently require it. Such inclusion is necessary to ensure that evidence has the widest applicability as well as for understanding healthcare delivery and quality of care among these groups.

Unfortunately, non-white people tend to be under-represented in healthcare research, even though they are reported to be as willing as white people to participate.2 3 Mistrust is the most common barrier to participation identified in studies of non-white minority patients’ participation in research, and efforts to overcome this may be key to reconciling the apparent incongruence …

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