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CHIBE and PAIR to Use Behavioral Economics to Transform Trial Enrollment Representativeness

scott halpern

The University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Health Incentives & Behavioral Economics (CHIBE) is collaborating with the Palliative and Advanced Illness Research (PAIR) Center to use behavioral economics to transform trial enrollment representativeness — an initiative that is called the BETTER Center.

scott halpern
Scott D. Halpern, MD, PhD

“Randomized trials, which are the bedrock of clinical research, do not typically enroll groups of patients that closely resemble the population of patients with the disease or the condition of interest,” said CHIBE Internal Advisory Boardmember Scott D. Halpern, MD, PhD, in a Penn Medicine press release. “The consequence of limited diversity in clinical trials is that the resulting findings may not apply to everyone. That creates both a justice problem and a problem with the quality of the evidence we have to guide health care decisions.”

Dr. Halpern is the director of the new BETTER Center, which is supported by the American Heart Association.

The mission of the Center is to:

“Develop and test behavioral economic interventions that surmount the barriers to randomized controlled trial (RCT) participation faced by disenfranchised racial and ethnic groups, women, persons
of low socioeconomic status (SES), and others with or at risk for cardiovascular disease.”

The vision of the Center is:

“Within 10 years, all RCTs designed to improve the lives of persons with or at risk for cardiovascular disease will enroll participant samples that are proportionally representative of the sex, gender identity, race, ethnicity, age, SES, and other characteristics in the populations to whom the trial results would be applied.”

Learn more about the BETTER Center here.