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ESTHER BUSH

This month, the “Take Charge of Your Health Today” page focuses on research and why equity in research participation is important. Jennifer R. Jones, MPH, CTSI community engagement senior coordinator, and Esther L. Bush, president and CEO of the Urban League of Greater Pittsburgh, shared ideas on this topic.

JJ: Good afternoon, Ms. Bush. I hope your October has started well. I’m really glad that we can spend some time today talking about research and health equity—what it is, what ethics are involved in research and, especially, how important it is that current research is representative of all definitions of diversity.

EB: Yes, Jennifer. I am so passionate about this topic. The Urban League of Greater Pittsburgh has been partnering with CTSI for more than 10 years now. In that time, I’ve learned so much from CTSI leaders like Dr. Steve Reis and my friend Dr. Elizabeth Miller. I’m extremely proud of the mutual trust and respect our organizations have built. I look forward to what we’ll continue to do together. I’m proud to say that our Urban League supports research and research participation and that we all work together to create a “research-informed community.”

JJ: Let’s talk about that for a minute. That’s the main part of our mission and work together. What does a “research-informed community” mean to you?

EB: To me, it means that all of our communities understand what health research done well looks like—that our communities understand the rigorous process that researchers must follow to ensure that risks are minimized for participants. It means that our communities are empowered to ask questions about research they may be interested in and to listen thoughtfully to learn how research has progressed over the years.

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