MADISON, Wis. - A program developed to recruit and retain African Americans in an Alzheimer’s disease research study is having success.
“This is really groundbreaking work to get people into the research and then to keep them in,” said Fabu Carter, outreach specialist working with Wisconsin Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center.
According to the Alzheimer’s Association, African Americans are twice as likely to develop late-onset Alzheimer’s disease, but are less likely to have an early diagnosis of their condition, which would better allow for treatment and planning.
“Alzheimer’s disease is a dreaded disease. It really is horrible and it robs people of their memory,” Carter said.
To encourage retention in the research study, participants are offered exercise and computer classes. A support group also has been created for participants.
“In the past two years we’ve seen recruitment go up and we’ve seen retention go up. We believe that classes, like those teaching exercise and computer skills, give back to the community and give back to the participants and are the reason that it is happening,” Carter said.
Last year the classes helped the retention rate for African Americans in the program increase by 4 percent.
The success of the recruitment and retention program is gaining international attention.
Tuesday at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference in London, Carter gave a presentation on the recruitment and retention program.
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