Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Black male incarceration can compromise research studies

Date:
May 6, 2014
Source:
Yale University
Summary:
Federal restrictions on including prisoners in medical research have negatively impacted research involving black men, who are disproportionately imprisoned, according to a study. Because individuals who are already in ongoing studies must be dropped if they are incarcerated, this compromises the ability of researchers to examine racial disparities in health outcomes studies.

Black male incarceration can compromise research studies.
Credit: Photo Illustration by Michael Helfenbein, Yale University

Federal restrictions on including prisoners in medical research have negatively impacted research involving black men, who are disproportionately imprisoned, according to a study by Yale School of Medicine researchers. Because individuals who are already in ongoing studies must be dropped if they are incarcerated, this compromises the ability of researchers to examine racial disparities in health outcomes studies.

Related Articles


Published in the May issue of the journal Health Affairs, the study found that during the past three decades, high rates of incarceration of black men may have accounted for up to 65% of the loss of follow-up among this group. Conditions such as cardiovascular disease and sickle cell disease are more common among black men than in white men, and have complex factors that influence illness and death. This makes it important for analysts to have access to a large number of cases so that they can draw statistically significant conclusions, say the researchers.

"A black man who begins a research study is less likely to follow up because he is statistically more likely to be jailed or imprisoned during the study than his white counterpart," said the study's first author Emily Wang, M.D., assistant professor at Yale School of Medicine. The impact of incarceration on health outcome studies was far less among white men, white women, and black women.

Government regulations bar study subjects from participating once they are incarcerated, unless the study investigators apply for special permission through their institutional review board (IRB). If studies do not specify otherwise, community-recruited participants who enroll in studies cannot be followed while they are incarcerated. In certain jurisdictions, they cannot be followed after their release.

Wang and her co-authors examined the protocols of a group of studies funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. They looked for studies that had received IRB protocols to follow prisoners, and also looked at how much loss to follow-up there was. They found that none of the studies received IRB approval for prisoner follow up; so the team then estimated how many individuals may have been incarcerated during the time period based on national imprisonment rates.

"We are missing opportunities to study the outcomes of research on this population so treatments can be tailored," Wang added. "It is important that research subjects who are incarcerated be allowed to continue participating in observational research that poses minimal risk to the participants."

Under current circumstances, Wang said the results of longitudinal studies may fail to accurately represent the experience of black populations and may bias estimates of racial disparities by either excluding people in jail or prison or discontinuing longitudinal follow-up at the time of incarceration.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Yale University. The original article was written by Karen N. Peart. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. E. A. Wang, J. A. Aminawung, C. Wildeman, J. S. Ross, H. M. Krumholz. High Incarceration Rates Among Black Men Enrolled In Clinical Studies May Compromise Ability To Identify Disparities. Health Affairs, 2014; 33 (5): 848 DOI: 10.1377/hlthaff.2013.1325

Cite This Page:

Yale University. "Black male incarceration can compromise research studies." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 May 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140506190738.htm>.
Yale University. (2014, May 6). Black male incarceration can compromise research studies. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140506190738.htm
Yale University. "Black male incarceration can compromise research studies." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140506190738.htm (accessed December 17, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

UN: Up to One Million Facing Hunger in Ebola-Hit Countries

UN: Up to One Million Facing Hunger in Ebola-Hit Countries

AFP (Dec. 17, 2014) Border closures, quarantines and crop losses in West African nations battling the Ebola virus could lead to as many as one million people going hungry, UN food agencies said on Wednesday. Duration: 00:52 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
When You Lose Weight, This Is Where The Fat Goes

When You Lose Weight, This Is Where The Fat Goes

Newsy (Dec. 17, 2014) Can fat disappear into thin air? New research finds that during weight loss, over 80 percent of a person's fat molecules escape through the lungs. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Why Your Boss Should Let You Sleep In

Why Your Boss Should Let You Sleep In

Newsy (Dec. 17, 2014) According to research out of the University of Pennsylvania, waking up for work is the biggest factor that causes Americans to lose sleep. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Flu Outbreak Closing Schools in Ohio

Flu Outbreak Closing Schools in Ohio

AP (Dec. 17, 2014) A wave of flu illnesses has forced some Ohio schools to shut down over the past week. State officials confirmed one pediatric flu-related death, a 15-year-old girl in southern Ohio. (Dec. 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins