Purpose: There is a critical need for genomic medicine research that reflects and benefits socioeconomically and ancestrally diverse populations. However, disparities in research populations persist, highlighting that traditional study designs and materials may be insufficient or inaccessible to all groups. New approaches can be gained through collaborations with patient/community stakeholders. Although some benefits of stakeholder engagement are recognized, routine incorporation into the design and implementation of genomics research has yet to be realized.
Methods: The National Institutes of Health-funded Clinical Sequencing Evidence-Generating Research (CSER) consortium required stakeholder engagement as a dedicated project component. Each CSER project planned and carried out stakeholder engagement activities with differing goals and expected outcomes. Examples were curated from each project to highlight engagement strategies and outcomes throughout the research lifecycle from development through dissemination.
Results: Projects tailored strategies to individual study needs, logistical constraints, and other challenges. Lessons learned include starting early with engagement efforts across project stakeholder groups and planned flexibility to enable adaptations throughout the project lifecycle.
Conclusion: Each CSER project used more than 1 approach to engage with relevant stakeholders, resulting in numerous adaptations and tremendous value added throughout the full research lifecycle. Incorporation of community stakeholder insight improves the outcomes and relevance of genomic medicine research.
Keywords: Clinical research; Genetic medicine; Genomics; Stakeholder engagement; Stakeholders.
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