The National Institutes of Health has created a new website, NIH Clinical Research Trials and You to help people learn more about clinical trials, why they matter, and how to participate. From the first cure of a solid tumor with chemotherapy to the use of nitroglycerin in response to heart attacks, clinical research trials - or research studies involving people - have played a vital role in improving health and quality of life for people around the globe.
Clinical trials are essential for identifying and understanding ways to prevent, diagnose, and treat disease. Research has shown that among the greatest challenges to recruitment of volunteers is the lack of general knowledge about what trials involve, where they are carried out, and who may participate.
"The ability to recruit the necessary number of volunteers is vital to carrying out clinical research that leads to health and medical advances," said NIH Director Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D. "This new, centralized resource will make it much easier for the public and health professionals to learn about clinical trials and how people can participate in them."
Visitors to the website will find information about:
- The basics of clinical trial participation
- First hand experiences from actual clinical trial volunteers
- Explanations from researchers
- Links on how to search for a trial or enroll in a research matching program
In addition, health care professionals can read about evidence-based strategies for talking with patients about trials, print audience-tested posters to help promote trials in clinics and offices, and find other educational materials.
NIH supports clinical research trials across the country and throughout the world. NIH's ongoing effort to raise awareness about clinical research and educate potential clinical trial participants about the option of a clinical trial is vital to developing public support and understanding for how clinical research drives medical discovery and improves health outcomes.
About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation's medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.