While remote trial management capabilities might have seemed unnecessary even just a few months ago, there’s no denying that clinical trial organizations need to incorporate these tools sooner rather than later. And while it’s critical to prepare your sites with a strong plan and deploy the right technologies that support remote trial management, don’t overlook the most important element to successful clinical trials — people.
Perhaps more than ever, patients will need to establish relationships with those running their trial. Consider how to accomplish this in an environment of remote management. Leverage texting and other outreach capabilities to keep patients informed of what to expect and how to get in touch with staff even if an office is closed. Another tool is development of relationship trees that clearly align staff to a number of patients with whom they can establish connections. These relationship owners can provide support as patients navigate new devices and protocols associated with their trial.
Keeping the human touch doesn’t only apply to patients; it’s also important to support staff through the transition to remote trial management. Staff members —including nurses, regulatory coordinators, finance team members, and program managers—are likely working in totally new ways while also supporting patients through new remote procedures. Conduct both in-person and e-communication updates on items like timelines, functionality, training, and other ways their work can support remote trial management.
The time for remote clinical trial management is here; research sites need to anticipate what emerging technology and practices will positively impact their trials now, and down the road. To help you prepare, we’ve developed A Four Step Guide to Managing Clinical Trials Remotely.