The following is an excerpt from our eBook 'The Power of Getting Everyone in Your Clinical Trial to Work as One Team'. Click here to download and read the full eBook.
How Is Technology Changing the Clinical Trial Landscape?
Technologies that can help to build a sense of team on large-scale clinical trials are those that bring essential processes into one place and make them smooth and seamless for everyone. For example:
- Communications tools that work 24/7
- Straightforward document management hosted via a single, centralized platform
- Content and information available in one place on demand and tailored to stakeholder needs and preferences
- Single-sign on for easy access to systems and data feeds that allow reporting from other cloud-based systems into one information hub
- Integrated tracking and auditing tools that provide assurance that procedures have been followed
Using these approaches to managing information and communication allows you to centralise as many tools as possible for all stakeholders in one place.
How Will Centralised Tools Make a Difference?
There are several areas of clinical trial operations where centralizing tools for the entire study team can make a transformative difference. For example:
For many patients, your trial may be their first and only trial. They will have limited familiarity with the lexicon and language of clinical research. Visually engaging ways of explaining informed consent can lead to a much more collaborative process between site staff and patients, helping the latter to better understand the protocol and its requirements. Longboat’s platform provides access to a series of concise, study-specific, patient-facing videos that are accessible to both sites and patients and can help simplify informed consent discussions.
By building training into a centralized system, you ensure consistency in protocol execution, reduce the day-to-day burden on healthcare professionals, and improve the experience for site teams and patients across every clinical trial site. Longboat’s platform offers 21 CFR-Part-11 compliant protocol-specific training modules accessible through any device and available on-demand. This allows flexible on-boarding of new site staff. Tracking of modules means you can ensure everyone on the team has received the required training.
A centralized system helps site staff and patients to stay compliant with the study. Whether one logs into the system as a nurse or a patient, he or she will find all the information needed to execute his or her role smoothly. Visit schedulers, visit-by-visit walkthrough guides, email, and SMS reminders for upcoming visits all help to ensure that site staff feel up to date and well prepared for patient visits — and that patients have a positive experience when they visit the site.
Longboat’s tools for patients also reduce the burden on site teams, providing ongoing study support for patients and caregivers, improving retention, and increasing compliance. Once they’ve signed up, patients are guided through each and every trial visit with email/SMS reminders and clear, patient-centric instructions on what to do before, during, and after every study visit.
Timely and tracked communications
How many study communications are emailed into the ether with no way of tracking whether they have been received and read? Longboat’s platform allows site staff and CRAs to be updated at all times and with a full audit trail. The one-click “Read and Understood” eSignature functionality allows stakeholders to be sure that essential study communications, documents, and alerts are being received.
Better patient engagement results in better retention and compliance. Yet, on a busy trial, ensuring patients get to hear about the trial’s progress can seem like merely a nice-to-have. With Longboat, patients use the same study platform as all other members of the team. They receive regular updates regarding study progress, milestones achieved, mid-point surveys, and study newsletters, all tailored to their understanding and needs. They can also opt in to receive those crucial end-of-study results.
Finally, Longboat tools support the all-important task of study oversight by providing a platform for direct communications, supervision in real time, and the ability to efficiently identify and address issues with site teammates as those issues are taking shape.
What difference could this mean for your clinical studies?
To get the best outcomes from your clinical trial, you need to get the best from your trial team. That includes site staff, study managers, and patients. This means you need to:
- Question why study processes are carried out in a particular way
- Seek to better understand your entire team’s needs
- Educate and empower your site staff and patients so they know what is expected of them
- Embrace technology that provides real-time, flexible solutions to meeting the needs of everyone on the team
By bringing stakeholders to work together seamlessly, you benefit from the power of team. The result is a better trial outcome.