For LatinX and Hispanic people burdened by COVID disease, where can they go for hope?
An early pre-print of our report is now available here.
What do we already know?
Access to and patient enrollment in clinical trials of COVID-19 therapies is likely strongly impacted by where trials are launched. Our objectives were to evaluate geographic factors associated with the location of COVID-19 clinical trials launched in the US to inform future site selection and resource allocation.
What does this report add?
A third of all COVID-19 cases in the US are in counties that have not had a single recruiting trial open since the pandemic began. Despite a rapid increase in the number of trial sites open in the US from March to June 2020 (n=186 to 1156), the proportion of cases in counties without an open trial remained relatively consistent (34% in March vs 32% in June), suggesting that trials continued to overlook certain counties with patients. Counties with a higher proportion of Hispanic residents had significantly fewer COVID-19 trials (rate ratio per 10% increase in % Hispanic: 0.825; 95% CI: 0.722, 0.951), after adjusting for county-level characteristics such as socioeconomic status, healthcare system factors, case burden, and epidemic duration.
What are the implications for public health practice?
A more targeted selection of future trial sites has the potential to greatly expand the number of eligible COVID-19 cases available for enrollment, thereby accelerating efforts to discover effective treatments, and improve access for traditionally underrepresented patient populations.
Special thanks to The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for funding and prioritizing this research.
The Institute for Disease Modeling (IDM), part of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Global Health Division, has the goal to support global efforts to eradicate infectious diseases and achieve permanent improvements in health by developing, using, and sharing computational modeling tools and promoting quantitative decision-making. Learn more.
Bennette C, Lyons H, Wagner B, Adamson B, Change S, on behalf of the IDM COVID-19 Response Team. Inequitable availability of COVID-19 clinical trials for Hispanic populations in the United States. Institute for Disease Modeling InfoHub Pre-Print. 19 Aug 2020. https://covid.idmod.org/data/Inequitable_availability_COVID-19_clinical_trials.pdf