Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Is a Target Enrollment Table required for a project using secondary data?

This question comes up often.  The Target Enrollment Table is designed to provide a breakdown of race and hispanic/nonhispanic ethnicity of your study population.  Whether you are enrolling and consenting project participants or reviewing de-identified patient charts, you should still be able to provide a projected breakdown of your anticipated number of subjects in each categories. 

Yes, this may be just one more piece in the large puzzle of an application package that you are putting together, but consider how much this data protects us.  A requirement to display diversity in targeted subject enrollment (or to explain a lack of any diversity) prevents research from being focused on only one particular racial or ethnic group unless there is compelling reason for such exclusion.  So, as you dust off your old TI-85 and try to remember which button is for multiplication, remember that this extra form is helping to maintain equality in research and prevent some populations from being excluded from research.

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