NIH COVID-19 Communities Responding Together
The Community Engagement Alliance (CEAL) Against COVID-19 Disparities
Community leaders can play a vital role in connecting their communities with important, accurate information about public health and clinical research. Find resources that can help you talk with your communities about COVID-19, the vaccines being developed, and the importance of being included in research studies.
Bookmark this page and return often to find new materials.
New You can find our most recent additions in the How clinical trials work and How vaccines work sections.
Educating and recruiting clinical trial participants
Understanding what it means to participate in a clinical trial is an important first step for people considering volunteering. Find answers to questions often asked about clinical trial participation on the NIH Clinical Trials and You site.
Topics include clinical trial types, study phases and the number of people involved in each, safety protections and providing informed consent, and questions one can ask when considering participation.
Ensuring diversity in clinical trials
In the United States, COVID-19 has struck racially and ethnically diverse communities particularly hard. African American, Hispanic/Latino, and American Indian/Alaska Native people are four to five times more likely to be hospitalized with COVID-19 than are white people. 1
Participants in any clinical trial should represent the variety of patients who will use the drug or vaccine being tested. But historically, clinical research studies excluded, or in some cases, exploited, communities of color. Today, many remain distrustful of clinical research, or face other barriers to participation. NIH is committed to the inclusion of Black or African American, Hispanic/Latino, and American Indian/Alaska Native communities in COVID-19 vaccine trials because it is essential for the development of vaccines that are safe and effective for these communities.
The NIH wants to make sure that new vaccines and treatments work for everyone — not just for some.
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) video on the importance of participating in clinical trials, especially for underrepresented groups
Fact sheets and articles
Fact sheet from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Office of Minority Health and Health Equity about the importance of diverse participation
4 Cosas que debe saber acerca de los estudios clínicos
Blog post by NIH leaders about the importance of being tested for COVID-19
Video on the importance of diversity when developing medical products, from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
Video on the importance of the Latino population in clinical trials from the FDA
Video from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) on encouraging women, including women of color, to participate in research trials
How clinical trials work
Find easy-to-read, basic information on research studies to share with your audience.
What to expect when you volunteer for a vaccine clinical trial
Videos from patients describing their experiences participating in NIH clinical trials
Collection of videos from the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services on the basics of clinical research.
(Spanish with English subtitles)
How vaccines work
Vaccines help our body’s immune system fight infections faster and more effectively, protecting us from serious diseases. The vaccine triggers a response from our immune system that helps our body fight off and remember the germ so it can attack it again if it comes back. It also helps provide long-lasting immunity.
Get general information on vaccines and how the COVID-19 vaccine will work to protect those who get the vaccine and those around them.
Follow the creation of a new vaccine and see the steps it takes before a new vaccine or treatment is available to the public.
Short, informative videos from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention featuring clinicians explaining the importance of vaccines and how to address patient questions.
NIH news release announcing the trial
Information on NIH’s COVID-19 vaccine research
The NIH launched a new clinical trials network called the COVID-19 Prevention Trials Network (CoVPN), to take advantage of existing research on COVID-19 vaccine development. CoVPN aims to enroll thousands of volunteers in large-scale clinical trials to test vaccines and monoclonal antibodies to protect people from COVID-19. A critical component of CoVPN’s success will be community engagement, particularly in those communities who have suffered from the most severe disease and worst outcomes from COVID-19.
1. COVIDView: A Weekly Surveillance Summary of U.S. COVID-19 Activity. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, August 15, 2020. Accessed August 23, 2020.