Vibrent Health, a health technology company powering the future of precision health research, has created a participant advisory board made up of health experts who will advise Vibrent’s Participant Technology Systems Center (PTSC). The board will provide insights, ideas and inspiration for the company’s products, including for its platform supporting the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH’s) All of Us Research Program.
The PTSC, which Vibrent operates on behalf of NIH, develops technology platforms and applications for participants and research staff that help recruit, engage and retain participants in the program. Vibrent’s Digital Health Solutions Platform (DHSP) serves to consent and enroll participants in health research; collect health information through broad sources such as surveys, electronic health records (EHRs), wearables and biospecimens; and provide participants with communications such as updates and return of information regarding their contributed health data. Vibrent Health’s systems also enable streamlined workflows and provide software tools and services for study teams to facilitate engagement and retention.
The new advisory board will work to ensure research participants have a meaningful, collaborative voice in how Vibrent iterates and deploys technology for diverse participant populations.
“As a leading digital health organization, we understand the critical role participants play in guiding the creation of the technology applications they will be asked to use,” Vibrent Health CEO Praduman “PJ” Jain said. “The opinions and recommendations of our users, who come from a diverse range of backgrounds and communities from across the United States, will ultimately make sure the programs and studies on our platform are successful.”
Informed by Experts
Rachele Peterson, Vibrent’s director of healthcare provider organization engagement, and Mark Begale, Vibrent’s vice president, will serve as liaisons to the board, which includes members with diverse backgrounds in public health, research, education and medical psychology.
“Now more than ever, research means hope,” Peterson said. “We use the power of technology to connect people, collect data and return information in ways that can change the future of health. Our board provides participants with a direct voice in the development of technology they will be called on to use. Through these partnerships, we build technology that meets a wide spectrum of expectations, needs and experiences to provide maximum value and accessibility through the lens of health equity.”
The Participant Advisory Board’s input on the All of Us Research Program will be an extension of ongoing efforts by All of Us to gather participant and community feedback, which the program has done from the start by involving participants in the program’s national governance and in local participant advisory groups across the country.
Members of the Participant Advisory Board will provide Vibrent Health with their insights and perspectives to improve participant engagement and retention across multiple participant-facing platforms. Members include board chair and All of Us Emeritus Participant Ambassador Stephen Mikita (Salt Lake City, UT); community champion Willie Canidate (Atlanta, GA); research assistant Jeavonna Coble (New York, NY); Dr. Ana Guzman (Phoenix, AZ); former elder services case manager and schoolteacher Carolyn Mahoney (Boston, MA); university student Giovanny Ramos (Chula Vista, CA); and mental health clinician Edmound Davis (Miami, FL).
“Working directly with a diverse cohort of research participants as part of the Participant Advisory Board provides a compelling reminder of how their feedback will help Vibrent Health tailor technology experiences that will ultimately enhance the well-being of all of us,” Mikita said. “This type of communication is at the heart of what this board stands for and I’m excited to start on this adventure with Vibrent.”
About the Participant Advisory Board Members
Chair, Stephen Mikita (Salt Lake City, UT) – As one of the oldest survivors of spinal muscular atrophy, Mr. Mikita has dedicated his life and professional career as an attorney to improving the lives of individuals with disabilities. For the last 15 years, he has served several national consortia as a passionate research advocate. He was one of the first two participant representatives to serve on the All of Us Research Program’s Steering Committee. He was co-chair of the Return of Value Committee and the Special Populations Committee.
Member, Willie Canidate (Atlanta, GA) – Ms. Canidate retired after 32 years serving the City of Atlanta as a procurement professional. She currently volunteers for the Community Advisory Board at Morehouse School of Medicine in Atlanta, where she was a health coach for E-Health Strides; and as a panel member, reviewing and making recommendations on juvenile cases for the Dekalb County Juvenile Courts. As a champion for service, Ms. Canidate is a board member for Credit Union of Atlanta. Ms. Canidate holds a Bachelor of Science degree in business management from St. Augustine’s University in Raleigh, North Carolina.
Member, Jeavonna Coble (New York, NY) – Ms. Coble received her B.A. in psychology from the University of Tennessee in 2018. She was a research assistant with the All of Us Research Program at Cherokee Health System, a federally qualified health center, where she was involved directly with participants and enrollment in Tennessee. She is currently pursuing her master’s degree at St. John’s University in New York.
Member, Ana Guzman (Phoenix, AZ) – Dr. Guzman received her medical degree from the National Autonomous University of Mexico. She has been active in public health, research, preventive medicine training and education development for over 15 years. She is passionate about empowering and helping individuals achieve a healthy lifestyle, prevent disease and self-manage their chronic disease conditions. Recently, she was part of the All of Us Research Program at the University of Arizona and Banner Health as a clinical research coordinator to engage the Hispanic community in Phoenix, AZ.
Member, Carolyn Mahoney (Boston, MA) – Ms. Mahoney has lived and worked in the Boston area her entire life. She is an active member of the All of Us Community Advisory Panel at Boston Medical Center. An elementary school teacher for 37 years, she retired in 2006. She then worked as a case manager for elder services until turning 65. Since then, she has been enjoying retirement with her spouse and friends. She is a cancer survivor.
Member, Giovanny Ramos (Chula Vista, CA) – Mr. Ramos was born in Tijuana, Mexico, and now lives in San Diego County. He is bilingual and studying at San Diego State University, majoring in economics. Mr. Ramos has been a valuable, enthusiastic ambassador for All of Us and is eager to lend his perspective to the technology needs and experiences of individuals interested in the program.
Member, Edmound Davis (Miami, FL) – Mr. Davis is an experienced mental health clinician with more than four years’ experience providing mental health services within the South Florida community. He is a PhD candidate at Nova Southeastern University in the family therapy department with a primary focus on childhood trauma and improving the lives and health of individuals and families.
“All of Us” is a registered service mark of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
About Vibrent Health
Vibrent Health develops digital health technology and research tools for health organizations, researchers and research participants. Powering the next generation of precision medicine, Vibrent’s scalable technology platform for individual and population health provides actionable insights to help accelerate medical discoveries. Vibrent Health is proud to serve, since 2017, as the Participant Technology Systems Center for the National Institutes of Health’s All of Us Research Program, which aims to collect health data from one million or more people to support a wide variety of research studies. To learn more, visit vibrenthealth.com.