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As I wrote in this editorial earlier in the year, there is not a lack of people or organizations committed to growing the access to and education about clinical trials. And in that article, I mentioned that I would be attending the PopUp Star clinical trial awareness contest award event. And I did: On May 31, 2018, teams and clinical trial stakeholders gathered at host digital healthcare advertising agency PulsePoint Inc.’s New York-based location, to announce the winner.
The premise of the contest was “How can different grassroots community-based events have an impact on awareness for clinical trials as a care option? What methods will help engage the community?” These are the questions that the PopUp Star Competition, sponsored by Greater Gift, a North Carolina not-for-profit, along with prominent individuals in the clinical research industry, set out to discover in a process that started in late 2017.
The public was invited to form teams and design out of the box grassroots efforts to raise awareness of the importance of clinical trials in local communities. During a 10-day period in early April, teams competed in Boston, MA; Charleston, SC; Winston-Salem, NC; and Sydney, Australia, to bring the clinical trials conversation to people through community events. More information on each teams’ community approach can be found here.
While I learned more about the commitment that clinical trial professionals have to their vocation, these contestants learned a lot more about their intended audience and how to best educate and reach them about clinical trials. From college students, to the elderly, the contestants shared their stories about clinical research and how it can be a gift for others.
The winner was the team from Winston-Salem, PMG Research Group, which featured an educational booth at the popular local food and arts festival on a rainy weekend in April. The winning team is pictured here: