Exco InTouch, a provider of digital patient engagement and data capture solutions for clinical research and healthcare providers, has predicted a substantial increase in device integration in clinical trials and real-world programs in 2015 and beyond.
Device integration has proven highly beneficial, in part because it creates a simple interface for medical device readings that are a fundamental part of electronic clinical outcomes assessment (eCOA) data. Additionally, there is a clear market trend to design solutions fully compatible with a multitude of home monitoring devices, all of which are capable of being integrated into eDiaries, via Bluetooth or Near Field Communication, ensuring on-time and highly accurate recording of outcomes. As a consequence, demand for device integration is rising fast.
The growing use of ePRO data collection, combined with Bluetooth technology being built into many devices, is fast enabling the integration of medical device readings into regular ePRO collection by patients, both in clinical trials and in healthcare settings. Device integration goes far beyond just medical devices though, with a growing market trend fast evolving to utilize and integrate consumer technology (ranging from weighting scales, thermometers and activity trackers) as tools to collect secondary outcomes data. While class I or above medical devices are recommended for primary endpoints, especially in phase IIIa studies, a broad range of medical and consumer technologies are finding application in secondary endpoints across all phases due to the valuable insight they provide into physiological data and patient well-being.
Device integration has multiple benefits. This includes real-time data review, time and cost saving in large projects and ease of use for patients, especially those with mobility issues who no longer have to travel to see HCPs. Moreover, device integration solves the serious problem of data collected through different instruments—in which patients often can report incorrect or subjective information on their well-being and their results. The real-time collection of data removes the need to rely on patients for accurate reporting and delivers objective information.
Tim Davis, CEO of Exco InTouch, said, “Device integration has marked itself out as a highly advantageous innovation that is bringing a range of benefits to patients and HCPs alike. Over the past two years we have seen a trend in incorporation of devices to provide valuable supporting data during both clinical trials and healthcare programs. Device integration has proved its worth as a user friendly asset for improving the accuracy, reliability and quality of patient data and reported outcomes.”