Latino and American Indian Community Health Workers Promoting Cancer Research Studies
Principal Investigator: Ana Paula Cupertino, Ph.D.
Less than three percent of all adult cancer patients participate in cancer research studies, including all types of clinical trials. Participation is even lower for patients from vulnerable populations: barriers include mistrust of the medical system, limited access to care, and lack of a culturally- and linguistically-appropriate research infrastructure.
In this pilot project, we will collaboratively develop a theory-based and culturally relevant training program for community health workers to advance awareness and interest in cancer research studies among our Latino and American Indian communities. Our central hypothesis is that a culturally sensitive, language, and literacy appropriate program will improve a) Knowledge about cancer research studies and b) Attitudes regarding participation in cancer research studies.
The program will be carried out in two phases. In Phase I, we will train 20 community health workers (CHWs). Training will equip CHWs with essential knowledge about cancer research studies, including the advantages and disadvantages of participation as well as providing CHWs with critical skills in disseminating information through their social networks. Implementation will be enhanced through a culturally tailored media campaign that will increase awareness about cancer research efforts, help build a knowledge base about the importance of participating in cancer research studies, and reinforce CHWs messages within the community. In Phase II, we will evaluate the impact of CHWs activities on community knowledge and attitudes about cancer research studies.