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The importance of multifaceted virtual investigator meetings

Monday, August 15, 2016

Meetings for all personnel involved serve as initial training for clini­cal trials. The level of effort and cost, along with the wait for most sites to be ready for a meeting, makes virtual in­vestigator meetings attractive in con­trast to traditional face-to-face events.

While virtual meetings have long been a part of the typical workday for the global workforce, the rapid deploy­ment of innovative technology has changed the way meetings were previ­ously executed, including new options for social interaction. Technology portals can be used to exchange infor­mation, host perpetual training mod­ules, record training interaction and record a users’ understanding of ma­terials. Platforms provide enhanced interaction and engagement during the meeting and include recording, polling, video, Q+A and voiceover options. Easy-to-enable breakout ses­sions allow group-specific training or discussion by level, individual site, sponsor and site or study personnel. These sessions can be interactive with instant information merging capabili­ties available.

Emerging technology, improved from yesterday’s Webex meetings, de­liver attractive opportunities in time and cost savings. A skilled meeting provider executes a virtual meeting within days of engagement versus the months taken to organize and deliver an in-person meeting. Virtual meet­ings can be delivered to all sites si­multaneously or delivered to sites in groups as they ready for enrollment, which allows for better success in cru­cial study start-up milestones. Virtual meeting content can remain perpet­ual for sites joining at a later date or for refresher training along the trial pathway. Virtual training allows for breaking up and delivering modules at a pace that enhances knowledge as­similation and retention.

In light of the advent of technologi­cal advances, augmented and virtual reality will afford new opportunities to provide quality training and infor­mation within a shorter time frame. This may afford reduced costs and enhanced delivery of life-changing therapies to patients.


Written by Guest Writer Stacy Weil. Weill is Vice President of Performance Optimization in the Technology, Innovation and Performance group at PPD. Stacy oversees a global team of individuals with skills in Business Project Management, Learning Services, Performance Analytics and Change Management. Her team’s focus is on change to improve quality, reduce costs or accelerate schedules that support PPD’s core business, drug development. Stacy’s team has been instrumental in PPD receiving numerous awards for PPD’s training and process programs.

This article was reprinted from Volume 23, Issue 08, of The CenterWatch Monthly, an industry leading publication providing hard-hitting, authoritative business and financial coverage of the clinical research space. The Action Items section features short columns  focusing on actionable or how-to advice from clinical trial professionals. To submit an Action Item, please contact editorial@centerwatch.com. Subscribe >>

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