NIH partners with fraternities to recruit 'All of Us' participants

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The National Institutes of Health added a new set of healthcare societies to its roster of engagement partners, including a group of fraternities and sororities, the agency announced April 20.

The 15 newly-added partners, which include the American Public Health Association, the National Association of Hispanic Nurses and the National Rural Health Association, join existing partners like the American Medical Association and the Black Women's Health Imperative. The updated roster also includes four African-American fraternities and sororities.

The NIH tapped these organizations to help the agency raise awareness about the All of Us Research Program, its national effort to engage more than 1 million participants in sharing biological samples, genetic data and lifestyle information. The program, which is slated to launch in May, will serve as a national research resource to inform future precision medicine studies.

A core tenet of the program is to capture representative samples of the U.S. population, including various racial, ethnic and geographic groups that have been historically underrepresented in scientific research. Engagement partners are a key component of this vision, helping the NIH in "forming relationships and building trust with communities across the country," according to an April 20 statement from All of Us. 

"These organizations will play an integral role in sharing the All of Us message across the country and helping us understand the unique needs of their specific communities," Dara Richardson-Heron, MD, chief engagement officer of All of Us, said in the statement.

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