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Patient-centric clinical development essential
  • By Lee Han-soo
  • Published 2017.11.01 17:23
  • Updated 2017.11.01 17:23
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The 2017 KoNECT-DIA International Conference on Clinical Trials opened its third annual conference to discuss a wide range of topics from clinical development to the future of clinical trials in Seoul Wednesday.

The first session of the conference emphasized the importance of patient-centric clinical development.

David Hou and Mariah Baltezegar answering questions during the Q&A session. Trish Caruana was not present at the conference and gave her lecture through a video call.

Clinical trials are often the first interaction between patients and sponsor companies. However, some trials can get sidetracked after failing to remember whom the clinical trial is intended. Therefore, matching the needs of the patients to the genuine scientific needs of clinical trials is still demanding.

“The definition of patient centricity can be defined as putting the patient first in an open and sustained engagement of the patient and to respectfully and compassionately achieve the best experience for that patient and their family,” said Trish Caruana, CEO of Rare Disease Solutions. The important thing is to think of the patient and the family as one, Caruana added.

“With the patient population now familiar with patient-centric policies, patients want a good ongoing relationship with pharmaceutical companies and expect patient-centric strategies,” Caruana said. “Patient centricity is a challenging model to use, but this is the model that will allow us to measure, define, implement and access our goals.”

David Hou, head of Site & Patient Networks for QunitilesIMS Asia Pacific Branch, talked about using digitally enabled tactics to achieve patient-centricity.

“Patients have evolved in a short period through the advent of technology from analog to digital patients,” Hou said. “This has fundamentally altered the patient’s journey from the onset of symptoms to obtaining care.”

To design a digitally enabled trial an enhanced patient profiling is needed, Hou added.

“This can come from analyzing online behavior and usage data from sources such as online searches, social media, mobile app usage,” Hou said. “To put it simply, pharmaceutical companies need a 360-degree view into the mindset of the patient to give the right messages.”

Benefits of using enhanced patient profiling with AI include improving comprehension and retention by up to 35 percent, higher patient satisfaction, and lower patient drop-out.

Mariah Baltezegar, executive director and rare disease consortium co-lead at INC Research/Inventive Health, focused her talks on patient-centric recruitment.

“Recruitment for the rare disease is extremely challenging for various reasons, including that there are very few patients that are globally dispersed, many rare disease effect pediatric populations, patients have physical impairments, that protocols can be complex and the burden on the patient and caregiver can be significant,” Baltezegar said. “These are reasons why 30 percent of phase 3 clinical studies into rare diseases fail.”

Strategies need to focus on the patient to make a successful patient-centric recruitment strategy, Baltezegar noted.

“Focusing on the patient involves engagement and support, minimizing protocol complexity, gaining the patient’s trust and identifying the patients and creating sites around them,” he said.


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