SOURCE: Cutting Edge Information

Cutting Edge Information

August 30, 2010 09:12 ET

Patient Recruitment Demographics Help Drive 72% of Companies' Clinical Strategies

"Know the Patient" Strategies Lay the Groundwork for Clinical Recruitment and Retention Success, Says Cutting Edge Information

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, NC--(Marketwire - August 30, 2010) -  Patient recruitment is not the first step in a clinical trial, but well-designed recruiting could be the most important piece. Companies have only scratched the surface of the potential benefits of deep patient understanding to more accurately develop protocols that will meet enrollment targets, according to consulting firm Cutting Edge Information.

According to the upcoming study, "Clinical Trial Patient Recruitment: Accelerate Enrollment, Increase Retention and Reduce Costs," 72% of respondents perform pre-project research into patient emotion and motivation. But much of that research is 'surface deep,' according to industry participants.

"The more information trial designers have about the patient population, the more likely you are to design a study that meets all enrollment goals," said Jason Richardson, president of Cutting Edge Information. "More nuanced demographic research saves dollars as coordinators put limited funds into the right recruiting channels."

Project partners pointed to geographically focused recruitment as a significant potential advantage in patient enrollment. Identifying patient clusters aids in clinical site management, helps determine ideal patient incentives and lets the clinical team communicate directly with local advocacy groups.

Thinking like a patient means heavily weighing emotional motivators. Benchmarking partners mentioned common considerations including:

  • Are patients embarrassed by their condition?
  • Will daily office visits be too painful a reminder that they are living with the disease?
  • Will they feel altruistic in joining a study?
  • Will the opportunity to increase the scientific understanding of a disease resonate with them?

More experienced patient recruitment specialists are better prepared for such issues, the study suggests. A clinical trial team may push for additional office visits, for example, while a recruitment specialist can identify the point at which site visit frequency will increase drop-out rates. In such situations, the team can identify the best trial protocols to meet the needs of all stakeholders.

"Knowing your patient volunteers and making a strong effort to think like them ultimately helps teams better meet the many challenges of study recruitment," added Richardson.

Cutting Edge Information (http://www.cuttingedgeinfo.com/) is a consulting firm serving the life science industry. For more information about clinical trials management, contact Elio Evangelista at 919-433-0214 or elio_evangelista@cuttingedgeinfo.com. For media information, contact Stephanie Swanson at 919-433-0212 or stephanie_swanson@cuttingedgeinfo.com.

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