A clinical trial is a type of clinical research — a process to find new and better ways to understand, detect, control, and treat health conditions. Through clinical studies, which involve people who volunteer to participate in them, researchers can better understand how to diagnose, treat and prevent diseases or conditions. Mayo Clinic conducts medical research with the goal of helping patients live longer, healthier lives.

During a visit, a doctor may diagnose and treat a current illness or condition. During clinical studies, researchers are trying to gather new knowledge that will help doctors improve medical care for people in the future.

Volunteers are an integral part of the research process. Researchers need volunteers for a broad range of clinical studies as it supports meaningful research to identify and address health disparities and to help ensure Mayo Clinic patients reflect the diversity of our communities.

People with a particular disease as well as healthy people both can play a role in contributing to medical advances. Without volunteers, clinical studies simply would not be possible. 

People volunteer for clinical studies for many reasons. They may have a desire to improve medical care for future generations, connection to a certain disease or illness, whether through personal experience or through friends or family, or have a personal interest in science. 

There are research studies that match every interest. Volunteering for a clinical study is a personal choice. There is no obligation, and participation is not right for everyone. After enrolling in a study, one may leave at any time and for any reason.

Researchers conduct clinical trials to determine the safety and effectiveness of new therapies. Mayo Clinic is committed to encouraging and promoting research to develop new treatments and some of those clinical trials have led to new or improved treatments for many conditions.

Mayo Clinic also recognizes the importance of not only sharing information about new advances in medicine and research with all members of the community, but also including communities in the research process as partners and advisers.

Mayo Clinic supports community-engaged research projects, education and training, and the reduction of disease burden in minority or underrepresented communities. Staff also provides consultative support and guidance for researchers conducting research with multicultural communities.

Mayo Clinic staff in the Office of Health Disparities Research located in Arizona, Florida and Minnesota support meaningful research to identify and address health disparities and to help ensure patients reflect the diversity of our communities.

To participate in clinical research at Mayo Clinic, and learn more information on clinical trials, visit https://www.mayo.edu/research/clinical-trials.

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