About this episode:
From a career devoted to finding better ways to connect patient volunteers to clinical trials, Lisa LaLuna knows why the public needed an online search tool that is easier to use than the traditional methods of access.
“Members of the public often want to find a trial to access the latest medicine, or help a family member, or just to participate as a healthy volunteer to further medical research. Pharmaceutical companies that run clinical trials of course want to enroll patients so their research can be successful. In spite of this mutual desire to work together, patients and trial organizers often cannot find each other,” Lisa explains.
Some trials are stopped because they cannot enroll enough people and others are delayed because enrollment takes too long. In this unfortunate scenario – one that happens too often – this slows down the development of treatments and cures that patients depend on.
Lisa explains the importance of this search tool in providing a simple, fast way to discover trials specific to a disease, a location, and the personal characteristics of volunteers being sought.
“You can even opt in to be notified when more trials are posted, and send a message to the local trial site to request contact to learn more and possibly be screened for qualification purposes. “ Lisa explains.
This free website can be found by anyone at centerwatch.com/clinical-trials.
Visitors to the site will find basic information about what a clinical trial is and why someone would want to participate.
Patient Advocacy groups are providing this website to their members to educate them about the value of clinical trials and where to find them, in order to support the search for cures. Patient groups like the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research, the Alzheimer’s Association, and the rare disease group The Rett Syndrome Foundation are enthusiastic about how their use of this tool is helping them help their communities of patients and their families.
“Clinical trial search tools have been too complicated in the past and we sought to create a tool that is simple and fast so anyone can use it,” Lisa explains. “Seeing the adoption by Patient Advocacy Groups is most satisfying.”
Lisa LaLuna of WCG Patient Advocacy has thirty years working in clinical trials and is a passionate advocate for easing the search for trials for those wishing to volunteer.