Community Engagement and Minority Inclusion
The Office for Community Engaged Research (OCER) provides support to investigators seeking guidance on all aspects of conducting clinical research in and with multicultural communities. Investigators are encouraged to schedule a consultation to address their particular questions.
Consultative services include:
- Understanding Cultural Factors — language, health beliefs, religion and more can hinder participation in clinical research. Knowledge of cultural backgrounds and issues of concern to different communities are essential in understanding the needs of the groups before research can begin.
- Developing Relationships — OCER serves as a liaison between multicultural organizations throughout the community, and is able make connections and help investigators engage with the community with the goal of providing better care for minority and underserved populations.
- Cultural Advisors — OCER has relationships with diverse community members who are willing to serve as advisors to the office and investigators. Most of them are interpreters/translators in the Mayo Clinic Language Department. These cultural advisors advocate for their communities and provide advice on cultural issues and research approaches. They may also join study teams to assist with recruitment, provide linguistic services, or provide other culturally-based assistance.
- Protocol Design — Cultural information and advice on protocol designs and recruitment/retention strategies to increase participation and ensure compliance with the National Institutes of Health and other funding agencies' inclusion policies.
- Grant Review — Assistance in reviewing and helping write grant sections related to minority recruitment for clinical research and clinical training grants, to assure compliance with NIH minority policies. Advice concerning identification of targeted populations and outreach plans, budget considerations, and completion of the required targeted enrollment form.
- Research Recruitment and Retention — OCER assists investigators in making informed decisions about how to address recruitment and retention of multicultural subjects in their studies by providing advice on the mechanics, barriers, and opportunities of recruiting and retaining multicultural subjects, guiding investigators on selecting the appropriate communities or multicultural groups for their study, advising and assisting with recruitment strategies specific to the communities, and linking and consulting with cultural advisors. Assistance may include advice on the development of culturally appropriate advertisements, contact letters, study brochures, posters, and consults with cultural advisors on suggested recruitment activities.