Case Western Reserve University Hosts National AWARE for All: Clinical Research Education Day for the Public on Saturday, November 6th

CLEVELAND – October 28, 2010 – Medical researchers say that the lack of clinical research volunteers is reaching crisis proportions and is rapidly becoming a major healthcare issue. In an effort to increase the health literacy in the Cleveland community, Case Western Reserve University, through the CTSC (the Clinical and Translational Science Collaborative: is sponsoring a clinical research education day through the Center for Information and Study on Clinical Research Participation (CISCRP). CISCRP is an independent non-profit organization dedicated to educating and empowering people to make informed decisions regarding participation in clinical research.

"There is a need for general education about the clinical research process, including the risks, benefits, and rights of participants," said Ginny Petrie, executive director of the Cleveland CTSC. "Patients typically learn about the risks and benefits for the first time when asked to sign an informed consent document. This is not an ideal time for such education because the person or loved one may be under great stress due to illness."

CISCRP is working hard to resolve a number of major healthcare issues by getting to the root of one of the health system's most significant problems: the severe shortage of volunteers to participate in the clinical research trials that are vital to any new medications or behavioral interventions reaching the people who need them. Surveys have shown that even though 94 percent of the public recognizes that participation in clinical research is very important to advance medical science; 74 percent say they have no real knowledge of the clinical research process. In addition, 98 percent do not know where and how to identify and evaluate appropriate clinical studies for patients diagnosed with cancer and other chronic diseases.

"It's clear that a major reason for the shortage of volunteers is the public's lack of knowledge about what clinical research is and how they can and should participate in it," said Diane Simmons, President, CISCRP. "In fact, a recent CISCRP survey showed that 35 percent of people who signed consent forms said they did not understand what they signed and another 10 percent claimed never to have read the document at all. The purpose of AWARE for All is to address this lack of fundamental knowledge."

Ken Getz, CISCRP's chairman and founder, will deliver key messages and information about clinical research to the public. He will answer questions that patients and the public should ask themselves before deciding to participate in clinical research such as:

  • What is a clinical trial and how does it work?
  • Why do we need clinical research?
  • What do you need to know about informed consent?
  • Is clinical research safe? What are the risks? Should I participate? How can I become more AWARE as a volunteer?
  • What questions should I ask before participating?

Attendees will have an opportunity to hear from medical heroes participating in clinical research. "We have selected the most captivating and moving stories of patients across the country," said Jill McNair, CISCRP's National Director, AWARE for All. "These patients will share their compelling stories about clinical research and insights about participation."


WHAT: National AWARE for All: Clinical Research Education Day for the Public

WHERE: YMCA of Greater Cleveland, 2200 Prospect Avenue, 1st Floor, Butler Hall

WHEN: Saturday, November 6th from 11:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. ET
11:00-12:00 Registration and FREE boxed lunch
Noon-1:15 Live Webcast
1:15-1:30 Participant feedback
1:30-1:45 J. Daryl Thornton, MD, MPH, talks about research and organ donation, MetroHealth, Director, Medical Intensive Care Unit
1:45-3:00 Q&A with physician experts and medical heroes moderated by Lena Grafton, director of community outreach of St. Vincent Charity Medical Center:

  • Kurt Stange, MD, family physician
  • Neighborhood Family Practice
  • Paul Gubanich, MD, Healthy Futures Program Cleveland Clinic
  • Sumita Khatri, MD, asthma researcher Cleveland Clinic
  • Chrisandra Allen, lay health advisor MetroHealth
  • Feldelma Dixon, medical hero and research participant

WHY: To increase your health literacy and make informed decisions regarding participation in clinical trials

WHO's INVITED: Open to the Public (Includes patients, families, caregivers, local disease specific advocacy groups, and anyone interested in learning about the benefits and truths behind clinical trials)

FREE: Parking, Childcare (provided by Child Watch Staff), Giveaways (to the first 100 people) and Boxed Lunches!

TO RSVP OR FOR QUESTIONS CONTACT: Mary Ellen Lawless: 216.778.1304

Founded in 1843, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine is the largest medical research institution in Ohio and is among the nation's top medical schools for research funding from the National Institutes of Health. The School of Medicine is recognized throughout the international medical community for outstanding achievements in teaching. The School's innovative and pioneering Western Reserve2 curriculum interweaves four themes--research and scholarship, clinical mastery, leadership, and civic professionalism--to prepare students for the practice of evidence-based medicine in the rapidly changing health care environment of the 21st century. Nine Nobel Laureates have been affiliated with the School of Medicine.

Annually, the School of Medicine trains more than 800 MD and MD/PhD students and ranks in the top 25 among U.S. research-oriented medical schools as designated by U.S. News & World Report's "Guide to Graduate Education."

The School of Medicine is affiliated with University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center, MetroHealth Medical Center, the Louis Stokes Cleveland Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center, and the Cleveland Clinic, with which it established the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of Case Western Reserve University in 2002.


In September 2007, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) awarded Case Western Reserve University the Clinical & Translational Science Award for $64 million to become part of a national consortium designed to transform how clinical and translational research is conducted, ultimately enabling researchers to provide new treatments more efficiently and quickly to patients. The consortium, funded through NIH's Clinical and Translational Science Awards, was launched in 2006 and ultimately will be provided to 60 academic health centers and research institutes nationwide. Case Western Reserve University, in partnership with the Cleveland Clinic, University Hospitals and MetroHealth Medical Center formed the Clinical & Translational Science Collaborative (CTSC) to provide full service and integrated clinical translational research capability within the Cleveland community that will improve the health of patients in Northeast Ohio through patient-based research. The CTSC also provides career development support for clinical investigators and offers each research participant resources in support of technology-intensive studies. In addition, the CTSC will create new resources for current and future investigators and for the Cleveland community The CTSC is led by principal investigator Pamela B. Davis, dean and vice president for medical affairs of the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine and principal investigator, and Richard A. Rudick, vice chair of the Neurological Institute at the Cleveland Clinic and co-principal investigator of the CTSC. To learn more about the CTSC visit: