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[ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

Community-centered CAM research

Elizabeth Sommers, MPH, LicAc, Research Dept., AIDS CARE PROJECT, 142 Berkeley St., Boston, MA 02116, 617-859-3036 ext. 24, bsommers@pathwaysboston.org

Issues: In order to be fully responsive to public health concerns, CAM research can incorporate principles developed by colleagues involved in community-centered research. Responsiveness to clients and communities promotes meaningful collaboration and partnership and should be considered an important factor in designing studies. Description: Using a model developed by the AIDS Care Project (ACP) in Boston, the presentation will discuss developing and promoting a client advisory board, incorporating cultural sensitivity and competence, and working with community organizations. Input from communities is vital in ensuring public interest, recruitment into studies, and enhancing the overall value of CAM research. Client advisory board input was integrated into every phase of planning an ongoing acupuncture trial conducted at ACP: identifying a relevant issue to study, designing an acceptable intervention, ensuring user-friendliness of the project through determining the types of questionnaires used and duration of the study, providing stipends for participants, and incorporating community updates on the progress of the trial. Lessons learned: Conducting research in the context of community involvement involves a commitment to edify and benefit CAM stake-holders – providers, clinical partners, the public, research collaborators, and funding agencies. The process is ongoing and requires communication and responsiveness to articulated community needs. Community relations and interactions can be considered part of an agency’s dedication to capacity-building. Recommendations: When channels of communication between CAM researchers and their communities are developed and nurtured, meaningful and mutually beneficial projects can be developed. Valuing community input can be considered an intrinsic element of designing socially responsible studies.

Learning Objectives: Following this session, participants will be able to

Keywords: Alternative Medicine/Therapies, Community Participation

Related Web page: www.pathwaysboston.org

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Organization/institution whose products or services will be discussed: AIDS Care Project
I have a significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.
Relationship: I am the research director at the AIDS Care Project.

[ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

Bringing Alternative and Complementary Health Practices into Medical Care and Public Health

The 132nd Annual Meeting (November 6-10, 2004) of APHA