Research has already made our lives better!
Thanks to researchers and volunteers like you, we now have:
- New ways to treat cancer, diabetes, and other diseases
- Ultrasound and X-ray machines
- Special blood tests to help doctors know how to treat our illnesses
- Vaccines to prevent disease
- New ways to stop smoking or other addictions
- Better medical procedures
- New ways to help treat depression
- Enhancements to lives of people with autism
Research studies may be medical or non-medical, such as psychological studies, tasks that test one’s thinking, or even surveys about opinions. You don’t have to be sick to participate!
You should know that the research you participate in may not help you personally.
Why Diversity Matters in Research
We need to include volunteers from different ethnicities, races, age groups, and genders when we are testing new ideas so we can be sure the results of our tests work well and help us learn about all of us.
Did you know that some treatments work differently in people based on their age, gender, race, or ethnicity? Researchers need know how the new treatments will impact ALL people who might one day use them.
Why do people volunteer for research?
- They may be compensated for participating.
Some studies pay research volunteers each time they visit for the study. Some have perks such as free therapy, nutrition counseling, or support groups.
- They know that they can quit the study at any time, for any reason.
Taking part in research is voluntary. Even if you say “Yes” and sign a Consent Form to join a study, you can still leave at any time if you change your mind. This is your right! It’s always UP TO YOU!
- They may have access to new medicines not available to the public.
There may be no other medication to treat their illness, or their other medications don’t work for them. Being in a study to test the new medicine gives them another option for their treatment.
- They want a treatment or test that’s too expensive or difficult to get.
A study could include a pricey medicine that’s already approved by the FDA, and the volunteer might receive it for free. A parent might like to better understand their child’s condition, and a study appointment would provide the testing they would normally have to wait months to receive.
- They are excited to play an active role in their own health care.
Volunteers in medical studies learn more about their condition, their symptoms and options to treat it. Often, study volunteers receive extra check-ups, lab work, and special diagnostic tests which may help you (and your doctor!) better understand your body and health.
- They think research is interesting!
Lots of volunteers enjoy science, having new experiences, and learning by being on the inside of research.
- They want to help all people and make a better world.
Many study volunteers feel good about helping others. They can help us learn something that may help their neighbors or future generations all over the world – possibly even their own children or grandchildren! Research benefits us all!