Clinical trials offer an option for excellent patient care and education, reduced costs, and more widespread access to care.
Volunteering for clinical research is not only a safe and available care option for those living with mental health illnesses, but it is the only way to find better treatment options and the only way we can ever find cures.
Here are some things you can do right now to find out more about volunteering for research:
Ask your healthcare provider about the availability of research in your area.
Simply ask, “Do you know of any research that I could participate in?” Many providers who treat mental illness are not aware of research in their communities because their patients don’t ask. Asking your provider at your next visit may encourage them to learn more about research in their community or become more involved themselves. Hold health care providers accountable for advancing mental health research by asking your health care provider about research.
Search www.clinicaltrials.gov for a clinical research trial near you.
Check out the ClinicalTrials.gov site, where you can search for clinical trials by condition or disease, by study type, or by numerous other criteria. Once you find trials being conducted for your illness, you can contact the listed contact person for that study to find out if there are any clinical research sites near you.
Contact a clinical research site in your area.
The STARR Coalition can help locate and connect you with the clinical research sites in your community. Even if they don’t have active studies you qualify for at this time, most will collect your information and contact you if something opens in the future.
Contribute to medical knowledge.
There are many ways to support mental health research beyond actually participating in a clinical research trial. You could respond to surveys, participate in advocacy/peer panels, participate in prevention or diagnostic studies, or provide genetic material to genetics databases like 23andMe that use the data for medical research. Every little bit helps!
We need your help promoting this National Call to Action to Support Mental Health Research!
Help build awareness by sharing this Call-to-Action on social media, on your profile and on social media groups related to mental health. Email it to your contacts and ask them to help by sending it to their contacts. If you have media contacts, reach out to them to and ask them to help promote the Call-to-Action by writing about it and publishing articles on it. Keep the momentum by posting and sending regular updates.