A clinical trial is a type of clinical research. Clinical research is a process of finding new and better ways to understand, detect, control and treat health problems. Through clinical studies, involving people who volunteer to participate, researchers can better understand how to diagnose, treat, and prevent diseases or conditions. The Mayo Clinic conducts medical research with the goal of helping patients live longer, healthier lives.
When you see your doctor, he diagnoses and treats your current illness or condition. During clinical studies, researchers try to gather new knowledge that will help them improve medical care for people in the future.
Volunteers are an integral part of the research process. Researchers need volunteers for a wide range of clinical studies because it supports meaningful research to identify and address health disparities and to help ensure Mayo Clinic patients reflect the diversity of our communities.
People with a particular disease as well as healthy people can play a role in contributing to advances in medicine. Without volunteers, clinical studies would simply not be possible. People volunteer for clinical studies for many reasons. They may have a desire to improve medical care for future generations, be connected to a certain illness or disease, either through personal experience or through friends or family, or have a personal interest in science . There are research studies that match every interest.
Volunteering for a clinical study is a personal choice. You are under no obligation to do so and participation is not good for everyone. After you enroll in a study, you can leave at any time and for any reason.
Researchers conduct clinical trials to determine the safety and effectiveness of new therapies. The Mayo Clinic is committed to encouraging and promoting research to develop new treatments, and some of these clinical trials have led to new or improved treatments for many conditions.
The Mayo Clinic also recognizes the importance of not only sharing information about new advances in medicine and research with all members of the community, but also of including communities in the research process as partners and advisers.
The Mayo Clinic supports community-based research projects, education and training, and disease burden reduction in minority or underrepresented communities. Staff also provide advisory support and advice to researchers conducting research with multicultural communities.
Mayo Clinic staff at the Office of Health Disparities Research located in Arizona, Florida, and Minnesota support meaningful research to identify and address health disparities and to help ensure that Mayo Clinic patients reflect the diversity of our communities.
There are many ways to participate in clinical research at Mayo Clinic. Three common ways are to volunteer to participate in a study as mentioned above, giving permission to have your medical records reviewed for research purposes, and allowing your blood or tissue samples to be studied. For more information on clinical trials, please visit https://www.mayo.edu/research/clinical-trials.
Imagine working for a global leader in an industry fueled by innovation and growth. Mayo Clinic has opportunities for you. Join us at Florida’s #1 Hospital by visiting https://jobs.mayoclinic.org/. For more information on health care topics, please visit Mayo Clinic Jacksonville at mayoclinic.org.
This article first appeared in The Jacksonville Free Press.