Issue: A continual process of information dissemination about clinical trials is an essential component of community participation. This paper examines the strategies of dissemination implemented in MDP 301 trial of the anti-HIV vaginal microbicide PRO 2000. Description: The following strategies were used for disseminating information. (1) Community Advisory Group (CAG): A CAG was formed prior to the start of the trial and comprises 23 community representatives from all sectors of the community. The CAG holds monthly meetings that are attended by study staff. Study progress updates are given at meetings and the CAG is responsible for further dissemination. (2) Study Launches: A launch is a community street event that aims to contact community members not contacted directly by the CAG. For the study launch the CAG managed to mobilize community stakeholders to recruit 100 volunteers who helped to attract 600 community members to attend the study launch. Information about the trial was disseminated and study staff were able to answer questions and concerns about the trial. (3) Road-shows: Road shows are public events that usually take the form of a street procession. Road-shows have been done using music and dance to attract onlookers. A recent road-show attracted about 600 onlookers and 200 potential participants. (4) Public media: Community radio talk shows are used as an additional medium to disseminate information. 4 shows are done per month with an average of 5 callers per show. Local newspapers have been used, with special columns dedicated to publishing clinical trial information, including interviews with principal investigators. Door to door advertising was used to deliver study information through leaflets and pamphlets distribution. Conclusion: An informed community can be supportive of a clinical trial site as was demonstrated in our communities who have provided an interactive and supportive role in the success of trial recruitment and retention.
Masuku, P. Community information dissemination in a microbicide efficacy trial in Johannesburg, South Africa. Presented at Microbicides 2008, New Delhi, India, 24-27 February 2008. (2008)