Focusing on Patient Experience in Clinical Trials
The race to find subjects that meet the various criteria for involvement in clinical trials occasionally overwhelms the more empathetic side of the enrollment equation. With large dollar amounts invested in drug development and an intrinsic need to be faster than the competition, the patient experience can become secondary. But processes are changing.
With more exact regulatory requirements and the voice of the subject gaining in volume, focusing on the patient experience in clinical trials is now a key deliverable.
In the past, subjects who chose to enroll in clinical trials were typically required to live on-site, spending the length of the assessment sequestered in a controlled facility. Though some trials require that level of subject oversight, many clinics and hospitals adhered to this process by default. As a result, subjects often left the trials with a negative experience.
As the voice of the patient has become louder, sponsors are now beginning to understand the importance of catering to an enrollees’ basic human needs. When the subject experience is more positive and they experience less disruption in their daily lives, the outcomes are often more precise, and positive.
Sponsors are also finally learning that the constant need to find subjects for clinical trials requires word of mouth and greater awareness in the community. When a subject has a positive experience in a clinical trial, she’s more likely – without breaking study blinds – to tell friends and family about the opportunity. Information sharing is a key component of sustaining momentum in the drug development process.
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