WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwired - July 08, 2016) - Today, the Lupus Foundation of America announces a new year-long grant through the Office of Minority Health, Department of Health and Human Services (OMH). The grant proposal, entitled Improving Minority Participation in Clinical Trials (IMPACT) for Lupus, aims to create a national model to increase minority participation and retention in lupus clinical trials.
"We are thrilled that the Office of Minority Health has recognized the important work we do as well as the influence and impact we have on the lupus community at large," said Sandra C. Raymond, President and CEO of the Lupus Foundation of America. "This opportunity will allow us to encourage clinical trial participation among minorities who are disproportionately impacted by this devastating disease and often lack access to quality healthcare."
This is an important program that addresses an area of great importance to us all. We will be leading this effort and will work closely with a small group of lupus key opinion leaders, people with lupus, experts in minority clinical research participation as well as the biopharma industry to adapt the best available model for minority clinical trial participation. The project begins on July 1, 2016 and goes through June 30, 2017.
Participation in lupus clinical trials is key to advancing research. People with lupus need an arsenal of treatments and we take a smarter approach to research so that we can improve how new drugs are tested and evaluated to get more targeted and safer treatments to people with lupus faster. This effort will help ensure new treatments are discovered that will be effective for all individuals affected by lupus.
Lupus is an extraordinarily complex disease -- the most heterogeneous of the autoimmune diseases, and one of the most difficult to understand and treat, as individual presentations are unpredictable and often insidious. Lupus is two to three times more common among minorities than whites and recent studies indicate that it affects one in 537 young African American women. The reasons for this health disparity remain unknown.
As the world's largest nonprofit, voluntary health agency dedicated solely to the disease, we are committed to identifying ways to streamline and strengthen the link between research and practice by focusing on the determinants of lupus disparities among minorities; testing and evaluating targeted, community-based interventions to reduce these disparities; and working with collaborators to achieve sustainable results and scale them broadly.
For more information on lupus and the Lupus Foundation of America, please visit www.lupus.org.
Lupus is an unpredictable and misunderstood autoimmune disease that ravages different parts of the body. It strikes without warning, affects each person differently, and has no known causes or cure. Lupus symptoms can be severe and highly unpredictable and can damage any organ or tissue, from the skin or joints to the heart or kidneys. It is difficult to diagnose, hard to live with and a challenge to treat.
About the Lupus Foundation of America
The Lupus Foundation of America is the only national force devoted to solving the mystery of lupus, one of the world's cruelest, most unpredictable and devastating diseases, while giving caring support to those who suffer from its brutal impact. Through a comprehensive program of research, education, and advocacy, we lead the fight to improve the quality of life for all people affected by lupus. Learn more about the Foundation at www.lupus.org. For the latest news and updates, follow us on Twitter and Facebook.