Clinical Trial Myths: Day 5

May 24, 2019

Clinical trials are only available in big cities, and I’ll have to travel far distances to participate.

It is true that traditionally clinical trials were more readily available in metropolitan areas, especially at large academic institutions. Rural patients typically have to travel much further to participate in trials than urban patients. This often leaves rural patients at a disadvantage when it comes to participating in clinical research.

However, researchers and providers are working to close the disparity between urban and rural patients. State and regional programs such as the Minnesota Cancer Clinical Trials Network (MNCCTN), Midwest Cancer Alliance, and others are working to bring cancer clinical trials to rural patients.

MNCCTN aims to improve cancer outcomes for all Minnesotans through greater access to cancer clinical trials in prevention and treatment. The network partners with five of the state’s largest health care organizations to bring cancer clinical trials from the Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota, Mayo Clinic Cancer Center, and the Hormel Institute directly to Greater Minnesota clinics. This eliminates distance as a barrier to participating in clinical trials, as well as the associated costs, time, and discomfort associated with traveling far distances.