21 December, 2016
By Mathini Ilancheran, senior lead analyst, clinical R&D, Beroe Inc.
Patient recruitment is often highlighted as the key factor in ensuring clinical study success. Ensuring on-time enrolments of patients, investigators, etc. is a constant concern throughout the clinical trial phases. However, patient retention through engagement is also a key factor — and one that is often overlooked. Patient dropout rates for pharmaceutical clinical trials are estimated to range between 15 to 40 percent of enrolled participants, depending on the trial phase.
Retention of patients throughout the entire cycle of a clinical trial is vital from scientific, as well as economic, points of view. Poor retention negatively impacts the overall amount of evaluable data for regulatory submissions and increases costs for pharmaceutical companies.
One strategic way in which sponsors are seeking to engage with patients is through patient health program. The approach is considered niche in the industry, with companies providing programs based upon trial phase, therapeutic area, and disease type.