One of the biggest challenges pharmaceutical companies face is getting new medications approved and in the hands of patients as planned.

Many times, delays begin in the development phase and can last for years with variant after variant falling short of expectations or failing to meet stringent FDA guidelines. At the development stage, however, the pharmaceutical companies still have control over the process and can affect the amount of time, resources, and funding that is dedicated to any given medication.

Patient population takes the control away from the pharmaceutical companies

It’s after the development stage, when a drug moves into the trial phase, that uncontrollable delays can derail the launch of a promising new medication. Introducing a patient population takes the control away from the pharmaceutical companies and places it squarely in the hands of the trial participants.

Even those participants with the best of intentions sometimes fall victim to unavoidable circumstances that impact their participation. Without enough participants engaged and following all protocol instructions correctly throughout the entire period, trials are held up, and beneficial medications are delayed in being introduced to the world.

Of course, clinical trials are critically important to the overall safety and approval of medications that eventually get released to the general public.

Companies gain vast amounts of data from patients and may learn crucial new information about dangerous drug combinations. At this stage, improvements can be made, or adjustments to dosing recommendations implemented.

The value of clinical trials is immense, yet, as companies strive to push through comprehensive clinical trials and make new medications available to our growing population.

This phase also tends to be riddled with challenges, false starts, and unforeseen delays.

Expanding to a wider population with Virtual Trials

One simple new solution that helps increase the participation rate by expanding to a wider population, is the incorporation of virtual trials into the clinical process. Only 5% of the population currently participates in clinical trials, so by increasing convenience we can include more patients.

Virtual trials also help to decrease the average patient dropout rate by as much as 25 percent*.

Multiple studies suggest that one of the leading causes of patients failing to adhere to trial requirements is their inability (or unwillingness) to show up for in-person visits at their designated clinical trial site. Providing an option for patients to adhere to the pharmaceutical companies’ specific requirements without visiting an office, significantly increases retention rates.

Virtual trials securely capture all required data through an app using phone, video, photo sharing, and other modes of communication. VirTrial is a leader in the virtual trial space and provides a secure platform that is HIPAA compliant, can be used on any device, and enables pharmaceutical companies to use their existing network of clinical trial sites and physicians.

Virtual trials are best suited for phase 3 and phase 4 trials when the data that needs to be captured is easily managed by the patient without the need for in-person observation, blood tests, etc. Incorporating virtual trials for the latter half of an extensive clinical trial promotes quicker completion of trial requirements and enables companies to significantly improve time to market.

VirTrial is providing ‘The Future of Virtual Clinical Trials’ today. Contact VirTrial for a demonstration.

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*Center Point internal review, C. Morgan, “Are Clinical Research Site a Dying Paradigm?”

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