Published on July 9th, 2019 | by Millennium Magazine Staff


Black Communities in Healthcare Research

Pictured above Geneva Holiday, MSN, RN

Whakeela “Ke-Ke” James, MSN, RN

As the Columbia Chapter of the National Black Nurses Association, we are sharing in their initiative to be a part of the All of US Research campaign in partnership with the National Institute of Health. The goal of this research program is to provide individualized precision medicine to identify best practices to keep all the population healthy. There is a clear disparity of African Americans and all minority groups in participation in research hence we are more likely to have disparaging side effects as recently seen with Lisinopril. The goal is to have one million or more people to participate in research. We have taken our first step as a chapter to help reach this goal by educating ourselves as health care providers from Invocare a local research company. 

Our second step as a chapter is to inform our community. There are many ways to get involved in research. The most beneficial is participation in clinical trials. The more people we have that participate in clinical trials will ensure negative effects to medication are identified early in the trial phase versus after you have been prescribed and the drug has passed other guidelines. In addition, clinical trials help to understand how beneficial medication may or may not be for us. As the effect of medications can differ.

The minority population has had a negative history with medical research and clinical trials dating back to the Tuskegee experiment. However, the face and advocacy for research have changed. There are research companies that are minority owned and run associations as well like Columbia Area Black Nurses that advocate for ethical and fair treatment of all. Join us in being able to better manage diabetes, hepatitis and improve treatment for sexually transmitted infections. In most cases for participation, volunteers receive advantageous and cutting-edge treatment and compensation for your time.  

Columbia Area Black Nurses Association Inc. (CABNA) partnered with the National Institute of Health (NIH) and the All of Us Initiative presenting two community events in Columbia to discuss the importance of biomedical research in the minority communities. CABNA collaborated with Eau Claire Cooperative Health, as a booth vendor at the Black Expo Empowerment Summit on May 18th, 2019 to educate participates on the importance of participating in research. The black nurses’ association also provided a lunch and learn with over 40 participates from the Expo to discuss the enrollment process, the importance of research in minority communities, and to answer questions about the All of Us Initiative.

CABNA also presented a “Paint and Learn” on May 19th, 2019 for nurses to discuss the importance of biomedical research and the roles they can play with enrollment with the All of Us Research Initiative.  The nurse event had over 80 nurses to register and attend. As an association and group of dedicated nurses we will continue to advocate for health, educate those in need, and assist with decreasing disparities in the communities we live, work, and play. 


Geneva Holiday, MSN, RN

Whakeela “Ke-Ke” James, MSN, RN

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