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White House Highlights Programs by TOUCH, The Black Breast Cancer Alliance, Involving Breast Cancer Clinical Trials For Black Wo

WASHINGTON , September 19 /Businesswire/ - As announced in the White House Cancer Moonshot Fact Sheet this month, TOUCH, The Black Breast Cancer Alliance ‘TOUCH BBCA,’ will bolster Black women’s breast cancer clinical trial participation by 2025 committing to reaching 350,000 Black women and motivating 25,000 into trial portals.

“We must advance the science for Black Breast Cancer to reduce the devastating mortality rate for Black women. We’ve already been able to achieve nearly half of our projected goal with the unprecedented impact and momentum of our iconic When We Tri(al) Movement. As of today, we have sent over 12,000 Black women into clinical trial portals,” says Ricki Fairley, CEO of TOUCH, The Black Breast Cancer Alliance. “We’re confident that we will not only meet but exceed our commitment to motivate 25,000 Black women into clinical trial portals by 2025.”

Additionally, TOUCH BBCA announces the launch of TOUCH Care, the first breast cancer advocacy-led program to provide a nurse navigator service to support Black breast cancer patients in clinical trials by developing culturally agile recruiting materials, training trial staff, and coaching patients. This program is being piloted with Genentech, a member of the Roche Group, and will add five trials annually.

“The lack of representation of Black women diagnosed with breast cancer in clinical trials perpetuates disparities in cancer outcomes," said Lauren Davis Pariani, Director, Patient Advocacy Relations, Genentech. “Genentech is proud to support the TOUCH Care program. This builds on our commitment to address inequities by advancing inclusive research in breast cancer and bridging the gap between research and clinical care for those who need it the most."

Led by TOUCH’s co-founder Valarie Worthy, MSN, RN, a 20+ year breast cancer survivor/thriver and Patient Navigator Manager at Duke Cancer Center, TOUCH Care will address both the logistical and the emotional barriers to clinical trial participation by Black women in real time. The TOUCH Care team works with pharmaceutical partners, researchers, and investigators to curate patient-centric trial experiences. The TOUCH Care program seeks to provide culturally-informed support to Black women diagnosed with breast cancer through the clinical trial interest, screening, enrollment, and treatment process with the ultimate goal of increasing Black women’s participation and retention in breast cancer clinical trials.

Black Breast Cancer is a different disease that requires special attention from the breast cancer ecosystem. Black women have a 41% higher mortality rate than white women. Black women under 35 get breast cancer at twice the rate and die at three times the rate. Even so, Black women continue to be drastically underrepresented in clinical trials, accounting for only 3% of clinical trial participants leading to FDA approval of cancer drugs between 2008 and 2018. The consequences are dire and until more Black women are included in the research, they will continue to face worse breast cancer outcomes. TOUCH BBCA is focused on the urgent need to end these disparities.

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