Confronting Racism in All Forms of Pain Research: A Shared Commitment for Engagement, Diversity, and Dissemination

Diversity, equity, and inclusion have been a significant focus of the Pain Management Collaboratory’s research. In this three-part series, the authors examine the gaps in addressing diversity, inequities and racism in pain research.

The third and final article in the “Confronting Racism” series builds upon the previous call to action and the proposed reframing of study designs with the goal of confronting and eradicating racism through a shared commitment to change current research practices. The authors emphasize the systematic disadvantage created by racialization and discuss how engaging communities in partnership can increase the participation of racialized groups in research studies and enrich the knowledge gained. Recommendations include diversifying the research environment (ie, research teams, labs, departments, and culture), the recruitment and retention of participants from racialized groups, and changes in reporting and dissemination practices. While these shifts may introduces challenges, the authors emphasize the benefits of increased equity, generalizability, and credibility of the data as well as expanded knowledge and a more accurate reflection of the pain experiences across all communities.