October / November 2012
Taking Risks to Help Others
by Cristina González
All HIV-positive people alive today because of their meds owe a bit of gratitude to yesterday’s clinical trial volunteers. Since HIV was first discovered, thousands of people have participated in scientific research studies that have led to the development of more and more easily tolerated treatments for HIV. As a result, we have nearly two dozen antiretroviral HIV drugs that help sustain lives and slow the spread of the virus. The next era of HIV research is focused on biomedical prevention (think PrEP, pre-exposure prophylaxis), vaccines and the cure. We asked whether you’ve ever participated in a trial—and if so, what it was like—and whether you’re ready to be part of the next generation of healers. Here are your answers.
The No. 1 benefit of joining a trial or study is:
It may be helpful for people living with HIV, both now and in the future.
Have you ever participated in a clinical trial?
Would you consider joining (or rejoining) an experimental clinical trial in the future?
Would you consider joining a clinical trial testing a possible cure for HIV, even if you wouldn’t benefit and there were risks of side effects?
- 76% - Yes
- 21% - Maybe
- 3% - No
How would you rate your overall experience in the trial(s) you’ve participated in?
- 62% - Yes
- 31% - Maybe
- 7% - No
Top 5 reasons for not participating in a clinical trial:
- 72% - Very positive
- 24% - Somewhat positive
- 2% - Somewhat negative
- 2% - Very negative
Top 3 things that would be helpful if you were to join or rejoin a trial or study:
- Didn’t know where to find the information
- Health care provider never mentioned clinical trials to me
- Trials were too far from my home
- Was told I didn’t qualify
- They didn’t offer any or enough money for participating
- Money for your time
- Ability to connect with other people in the trial or study
- Access to a case manager or social worker at the study site
Search: clinical trials, HIV treatment, research, antiretrovirals
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