Methodological and logistical considerations to study design and data collection in racial/ethnic minority populations evaluating outcome disparity in hematopoietic cell transplantation.

Publication Type:

Journal Article


Biology of blood and marrow transplantation : journal of the American Society for Blood and Marrow Transplantation, Volume 15, Issue 8, p.903-9 (2009)


2009, Center-Authored Paper, Clinical Research Division, Consortium Authored Paper, Continental Population Groups, Data Collection, Ethnic Groups, Feasibility Studies, hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, Humans, Methods, Treatment Outcome, United States


Outcome disparity associated with race or ethnicity in the United States has been observed in hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT). The underlying reasons for such disparity are not known. In the United States, an optimal study of health care disparity by race or ethnicity involves consideration of both biologic and psychosocial determinants, which requires an adequately powered, prospective cohort study design. To better characterize the nature and quantify the magnitude of the many impediments relevant to conducting a successful prospective study involving racial or ethnic minorities in HCT, we conducted a feasibility study to help guide planning of a larger scale outcome and disparity study in HCT. The primary questions to be addressed in the study were: (1) can we establish a racially or ethnically diverse patient sample that will respond to a survey focused on sociodemographic, economic, health insurance, cultural, spiritual, and religious well-being, and social support information? (2) What is the retention rate in the study over time? (3) What is the quality of the data collected from the patients over time? The challenges we faced in conducting this multicenter feasibility study are summarized in this report. Despite the difficulty in conducting disparity studies in racial and ethnic minorities, such studies are essential to ensure that people of all ethnic and racial backgrounds have the best chance possible of benefiting from HCT.