While patient outreach efforts often focus on study recruitment, patient retention should also be a top goal for your communication plans.. In fact, retention might even be a more critical element as it is the component most likely to ensure your trial moves through its phases smoothly. Drop out rates for long-term Phase 3 trials can be as much as 30% of enrolled patients. Retaining participants in a trial helps save time and money, ensuring your study reaches a successful completion. The bottom line: engagement should not stop once the patient is enrolled. In fact, that’s when they’re the most receptive to your messaging and you want to concentrate efforts on keeping them engaged on their clinical trial journey. Technology integrations within your clinic can ensure retention engagement is successful.
Taking advantage of mobile apps and texting capabilities should be a key tool in your efforts to increase trial retention. Mobile apps account for 89% of mobile media time; similarly, 80% of the American population texts. In fact, the average American sends and receives 2,819 text messages per month. And while most of your patients are on their mobile devices, the majority of CTO’s are not maximizing their effectiveness at reaching enrolled patients. Both texting and mobile app technologies can be integrated into your CTMS to directly connect you to enrolled patients so you can get information to them quickly and efficiently. These communications can range from appointment scheduling to calendar reminders for activities related to the trial, like taking medication to opportunities for them to provide feedback and ask questions. You can also deploy these tools to support any of the other services you may offer trial participants such as ride services and patient payments. Ensuring that your clinical research office is leveraging the most commonly used tools will help today’s patient population stay connected to your organization with the long-term goal of retaining them within a trial.
When considering which technologies to deploy against patient retention, understanding both the patient experience and the benefit it provides your team will be important to the success of your efforts. By keeping patients engaged and supported, they’re more likely to stay in the trial and solidify bonds with your team with whom they interact with on a consistent basis. Technologically advanced tools like eConsent, which enables immediate updates and signatures for all trial “paper”work, enhances patient experience with easy-to-understand trial information. It also improves participant compliance and boosts patient engagement.
Above all else, you want to demonstrate that your team is there for the patients in a trial. Technology can make that easier and more effective for both trial managers and enrollees. Check out our “Top 3 Trends That Are Changing Patient Recruitment” webinar for more information on improving results and see our CTMS in action.