NEW YORK — As a brand developed with dermatologists and backed by science, CeraVe is committed to providing safe and efficacious skincare products for all people and recognizes that there are representation gaps within the skincare industry. This includes representation at the
clinical research level, both for participants of dermatological clinical trials and the investigators conducting them, of which there is a significant disparity for skin of color. To help close this existing racial inequity gap in dermatological research, CeraVe is establishing a fund at Howard University, one of the only historically Black universities with a Department of Dermatology, to help its faculty further their expertise and build the infrastructure needed to conduct clinical trials with a focus on skin of color.
Not only do Black physicians account for just 3% of dermatologists, despite comprising close to 13% of the US population, the National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics reports that the Black population is consistently underrepresented in science and engineering (S&E) education and employment. A 2011 Science study by Ginther et al. identified a gap in scientific funding, showing that Black researchers are 10% less likely to obtain funding than their White counterparts. Diversity is not just lacking in those participating in clinical trials, but also in those conducting the trials.
However, inclusion of people of color in research and clinical trials is imperative to understand how skin conditions impact this patient population differently, which will lead to the development of efficacious products for skin of color, as well as education for companies and doctors to better serve this patient population. This new partnership will help Howard University, which serves a predominantly Black patient population, forge the path to advance dermatological science and improve representation of Black people leading clinical trials.
The Partnership with Howard University
The first stage of the partnership between CeraVe and Howard University, will help fund faculty education to obtain certification to conduct clinical trials. By partnering with the Howard University Dermatology Department, CeraVe is helping the University become a leader in research and innovation of dermatological science for skin of color.
“The creation of the fund in partnership with CeraVe allows us to invest in training our academic faculty to conduct clinical research trials, the first step towards building a dermatology clinical trials unit in the only dermatology department at a historically Black university,” said Dr. Ginette Okoye, Chair of Dermatology at Howard University College of Medicine. “The brand’s vision and support of the department of dermatology at Howard University improves the retention, and ultimately the academic promotion, of faculty from groups underrepresented in medicine, and by extension provides more opportunities for mentorship of UIM students and residents.”
“Equity within skincare is more than representation in marketing and advertising. It is representation of all people at the root of product development,” said Tom Allison, CeraVe co-founder and Senior Vice President of Global Professional Marketing. “To truly achieve therapeutic skincare for all, people of all skin types and tones must be part of skincare research, and this fund at Howard University is one step towards closing the inequity gap.”
Howard University’s College of Medicine and Howard University Hospital have been associated since the 1860s and have since been the training ground for some of the nation’s top Black physicians. Howard has a long-standing goal of developing scholars and professionals that drive change in today’s global issues. Both Howard University and CeraVe are committed to transform values into action to address the health inequities impacting people of color. The funding from CeraVe will cover training for faculty from the Department of Dermatology at Howard University College of Medicine to become certified to lead clinical trials, a critical and groundbreaking step in advancing dermatology for skin of color.
To learn more about CeraVe and its mission to achieve therapeutic skincare for all people, visit www.cerave.com