What does a car wash have to do with TB vaccines? Effective, genuine community engagement is key to the success of any clinical trial. And that is certainly true with TB vaccine research. Our partners, The Aurum Institute, work with residents of Tembisa, South Africa to promote health, prevent and treat disease and recruit participants for an expanding number of clinical trials for TB and HIV.
That includes recruiting at places like the city’s car washes, where young entrepreneurs work to earn income. But these roadside shops are alsto social gatherings where music and word of mouth brings discussions of life, health and opportunities for those things to intersect. Some TB clinical trials engage with car wash owners and workers to spread the word and recruit participants, enabling one vaccine trial to meet its enrollment targets at record pace. As we work toward developing new, effective tuberculosis vaccines, every trial, every subject, every clean car can make a difference.