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Analysis: Services that ease site burden enhance clinical trial enrollment

Monday, June 19, 2017

BBK Worldwide, a clinical trial recruitment, engagement and technology company, has released results of a data analysis across a broad spectrum of trials. The findings confirm the premise that alleviating site staff of many of the mechanical aspects of clinical trial patient management allows more time for personal patient care, creating an enhanced clinical trial experience for patients and site staff alike. Results of the analysis show that patient-centric services have a positive impact on site staff satisfaction ratings and boost favorable opinions of clinical trial sponsors—the prelude to the coveted status of “sponsor of choice.”

Through the Site Voice initiative, which utilizes the Net Promoter Score (NPS)—an established and validated customer experience metric introduced in Harvard Business Review in 2003—BBK assesses the experience and degree of satisfaction that sites have with sponsors and the activities of their vendor designates. The Site Voice research considers sites as the critical customers of patient recruitment and engagement services, as they are ultimately accountable for patient care. BBK’s objective is to create a study environment where research coordinators and investigators are deemed “Promoters” by the Site Voice evaluation, versus study “Passives,” or worse, “Detractors.”

With regard to BBK’s patient-centric engagement services, sites were asked to rate their experience with the RSG Card reimbursement system (89% very satisfied and satisfied), the RSG Arrive travel program (93% very satisfied and satisfied), and the Protocol Pal™ mobile app (83% very satisfied and satisfied). “It’s motivating for BBK’s site ambassadors and concierge representatives to receive such positive feedback as ‘Staff willing to help us to satisfy patient needs,’ ‘Quick and easy,’ ‘Patients like it,’ ‘Dependable’ and ‘Easy to schedule,’” said Hannu Koski, manager of BBK’s Site Support and Concierge Services and Site Voice initiative.

BBK’s analysis of RSG Card and Arrive data from more than 19 countries, 400 sites and 800 patients, found that:

  • Global patient withdrawal percentages were 60% lower at sites that used RSG Card.
  • 5% average withdrawal at RSG Card sites compared to 18.5% average withdrawal at non-RSG Card sites.
  • Regionally, US withdrawal was 73% lower, and European withdrawal was 59% lower.
  • Global patient withdrawal percentages were 58% lower at sites that used RSG Arrive.
  • 8% average withdrawal at RSG Arrive sites compared to 13.8% average withdrawal at non-RSG Arrive sites.
  • Regionally, US withdrawal was 82% lower, and European withdrawal was 67% lower.

In an ancillary analysis, it was clear that site staff prefer multi-platform access, opting to deploy a combination of mobile app, desktop, and web-based technologies in administering the daily activities of a clinical trial. As the industry trend is moving away from a paper-based system, multi-platform availability provides a much-needed solution. “What you need on the go, or more importantly, what tasks you should or should not be completing within a mobile environment, is not the same as what you want, or need to do, when you are sitting at your desk,” said Erica Mercado, BBK’s director of Innovation. “Our varied technologies and their customized content deliver information in a manner that best suits site staffs’ need for flexibility and personal preferences.”

Site Voice, administered on a regular basis by BBK and included in a comprehensive package of sponsor reporting, also evaluates the willingness of clinical trial care providers to request such programs as global travel support, centralized patient reimbursement, referral management, and secondary referral screening. “At BBK, we believe nothing substitutes for the patient / care provider relationship, thus our engagement efforts focus on bringing care providers and patients closer together. The goal is simple. Care for site staff and principal investigators so that they can care for study patients—the essence of patient centricity,” said BBK Founding Principal and CEO Joan F. Bachenheimer.

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