In a recent clinical trial in gynecology, 40 percent of eligible patients were recruited with the help of partner channels and not from advertising.
Patient recruitment was a step-wise process. First, patients were informed using information material which was approved by the relevant Ethics Committee about the most important details of the planned clinical trial. Second, they completed a short online questionnaire to find out if they are potentially eligible for participating in the trial. Third, a medical team assessed as many eligibility criteria as possible (so-called “pre-screening”) by the means of a phone interview with the patient. The result: About five percent of the pre-screened patients were referred to the sites.
After referral, sites are informed about each new patient. Using trained personnel and software support is provided to both, the site and the patient in order to arrange the actual screening procedures. Sites were equipped with an easy-to-use online software to help them manage these referred patients. This step-wise process helps to detect non-eligible patients at an early stage of screening. In addition, by following up the eligible patients until referral reduces the number of screening failures and enhances the patient’s commitment for the clinical trial.