Patient retention in clinical trials is a huge concern for many sponsors. It can be costly to lose it before it is completed, so finding ways to improve retention is important. This blog post will discuss why patient retention is important and how to improve it. We’ll also look at the cost of losing some methods used to improve retention rates.
Why Is Patient Retention Important?
Patient retention is essential for some reasons.
First, it helps to ensure that the data collected during a clinical trial is accurate and complete. If they drop out of a trial before it is finished, there may be gaps in the data that make it difficult to interpret the results.
Second, it helps to ensure that trials are completed on time. If too many patients drop out, a trial may need to be extended, which can delay the approval of new treatments. Finally, high retention rates are a sign of patient satisfaction. If they are happy with the care they are receiving, and how the trial is being conducted, they are more likely to recommend the to others.
Why Do Patients Drop Out of Clinical Trials?
Patients may drop out of clinical trials for several reasons, including inconvenience and overwhelm, lack of communication, feeling underappreciated, or financial barriers. Each of these reasons is important to consider when working to improve patient retention in clinical trials.
- Inconvenience and overwhelm can be major factors in why patients drop out of clinical trials. They may be less likely to complete, that is not conveniently located or requires too many visits. Similarly, if a trial is overly complicated or time-consuming, and may drop out due to overwhelm.
- Lack of communication can also lead to dropping out of clinical trials. If they do not feel like they are being kept in the loop or do not understand what is expected, they may be less likely to continue participating.
- Feeling underappreciated can also cause to drop out of clinical trials. Patients who feel like their time and effort are not valued may be less likely to stick with a trial.
- Finally, financial barriers can prevent them from completing clinical trials. If it requires participation, payment or reimbursement is unavailable, and may be unable to continue.
Working to improve retention in clinical trials is important for ensuring. Considering why patients drop out, steps can be taken to improve retention and keep involved.
How to Improve Patient Retention?
After we understand the main reasons patients have for dropping out of clinical trials, we can start tackling the challenge of patient retention. Here are a few key ways that improve:
– Provide hybrid trials. Hybrid trials are a type of clinical trial that combines in-person and remote elements, which can be helpful for patients who may have difficulty attending traditional in-person trials. This type of trial can help improve retention by making it more convenient to participate.
– Financial incentives. In some cases, financial incentives may be necessary to encourage patients to stay in clinical trials. However, it’s important to ensure that any financial incentives are ethical and legal before offering them.
– Make patients feel listened to, valued, and supported. Patient satisfaction is essential for retention, so it’s important to make sure your patients feel heard and valued. One way to do this is by maintaining clear and open communication with patients throughout the trial.
– Link up with organizations. Patient organizations can be an excellent resource for finding and keeping clinical trial participants. By partnering with these organizations, you can help connect potential with trials that are a good fit for them.
– Lighten the psychological burden. Clinical trials can be emotionally demanding for patients, so ensuring they have adequate support throughout the process is important. One way to do this is by providing counseling and other services to help them deal with any anxiety or stress they may be experiencing.
– Communicating with effectively. Clear and effective communication is essential for keeping engaged in clinical trials. Make sure to provide patients with updates on the progress and any changes that may occur, and be available to answer any questions.
– Leveraging new technology to support retention. Several new technologies can be used to help improve retention in clinical trials. For example, portals can be used to give trial participants access to information and resources, and tracking tools can help keep them on track with their participation.
By following these tips, you can help improve retention in your clinical trials and ultimately improve the quality of your data. Patient retention is essential for ensuring the success of clinical trials, so it’s important to make it a priority. By improving retention, you can ensure that your trials are more successful and that get the treatment they need.
The Cost of Dropouts
Dropouts can be costly for several reasons.
First, it takes time and money to recruit new patients. Finding and screening potential participants can be lengthy, and advertisements or other recruitment methods may not always be successful.
Second, if they drop out before the trial is completed, the data they have already provided may be unusable. This is because the trial may not have enough data to meet its statistical requirements, or the data from them who dropped out may be biased.
Finally, lost data can lead to delayed approval of new treatments. If treatment is effective in a clinical trial but only in a small number of patients, it may not be approved for use by the relevant regulatory body. This delay can be costly for both patients and pharmaceutical companies.
In the past 18 years, CromosPharma has conducted over 300+ clinical trials for a wide range of therapeutic indications.
Thank you for reading! Hope this article helped you better understand the importance of retention in clinical trials.