DOI: 10.1161/circ.148.suppl_1.14640 ISSN: 0009-7322

Abstract 14640: Community Socioeconomic Distress is Associated With Poor Access to Heart Failure Clinical Trials in the United States

Anirudha S Chandrabhatla, Taylor M Horgan, Adishesh K Narahari, Kenan W Yount, Nicholas R Teman, John A Kern, Sula Mazimba, JAMES D BERGIN, Leora Yarboro
  • Physiology (medical)
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

Introduction: Clinical trials have historically lacked representation from minorities and individuals from lower socioeconomic backgrounds. Little is known about the role geographic access plays in recruiting diverse populations for clinical trials.

Objectives: Given disparities in clinical trial enrollment, we sought to analyze how access to heart failure trials varies across demographic groups.

Methods: We queried for trials classified under “heart failure” that are recruiting and enrolling adult patients. Trial site addresses were obtained using Google Maps. We calculated drive times from each US census tract to the closest trial site using ArcGIS Pro v3.1. Demographic information and urban / rural statuses for census tracts were obtained from the US Census Bureau. Distressed Community Index (DCI) scores (0 = no distress, 100 = severe distress) based on metrics including education level, poverty, and unemployment were collected. Data were analyzed using Python v3.8.

Results: We identified 954 heart failure trials with 644 unique sites in the US. About 54% of the rural population lives more than 30 minutes from a trial site compared to 22% of the urban population (OR 0.23; p < 0.001). Analysis of DCI scores covering 328 million people revealed that drive times increase with higher socioeconomic distress ( p < 0.001; Figure). In both urban and rural settings, median drive times for individuals in the top 10% of distressed communities (56 min urban and 79 rural) are more than three times those of individuals in the lowest 10% of distressed communities (18 min urban and 23 rural). A larger proportion of non-white minorities live less than 30 minutes from a trial site compared to the white population (77% vs. 60%; OR 2.23; p < 0.001).

Conclusions: Increased socioeconomic distress is associated with worse access to heart failure trial sites for both urban and rural populations. Geographic barriers should be addressed to improve diversity in trials.

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