To ensure community engagement in the research process, research institutions must collaborate with community organizations to identify and understand public health needs.
Through the CTSA Program, NCATS supports a broad range of activities that engage communities in health initiatives and clinical research. Working with federal and nonprofit agencies, CTSA Program hubs collaborate with public health professionals, health care providers, researchers and community-based groups to:
- Develop methods of effective community dialogue and research.
- Ensure that updated health information is widely available.
- Provide information and access to clinical trials and studies.
- Promote participation in clinical trials.
Building Community Trust
To achieve successful community engagement, partnerships are built on respect and trust. Investigators supported by the CTSA Program value the role of community participation in translating research results into new treatments to improve health, including in underserved communities.
Meeting Community Needs
CTSA Program investigators conduct their research and outreach efforts through neighborhood service and community centers as well as in mobile units. Projects include education about, prevention of and management of a variety of conditions, including obesity, high blood pressure (hypertension), type 2 diabetes, dental disorders and drug addiction. Community members provide their input on clinical studies and health programs by serving on advisory boards to CTSA Program hubs.
Spotlight: Principles of Community Engagement
This comprehensive guide, available in English and Spanish, outlines core principles for engaging diverse communities in clinical research activities.