Crunchbase News wrote an article shedding light on some of the effects the clinical research field has seen since COVID-19 has forced us all to adapt to new methods. For clinical trials, these changes include the need to go virtual and ensuring trials are still accessible to patients. Deep 6 AI CEO and Founder Wout Brusselaers spoke with Crunchbase about how the pandemic has changed research:
“The real impact right now with COVID is that a lot of the big trial sites, and some smaller ones, are having to blend virtual with on-site,” Brusselaers said. “The key goal is make sure your organization has all of the tools to be ‘crisis robust,’ where you have to minimize the face-to-face, but also be selective on who is in the trial.”
The Pasadena, California-based company provides clinical trials acceleration software and raised a $17 million Series A round last November for accelerating and optimizing clinical trial design, recruitment and management.
The process of evaluating patients is time-consuming, Brusselaers said. As a result, more than 85 percent of trials are delayed and even fail due to poor recruitment, he added.
While virtual clinical trials may attract a more diverse subset of participants, without some sort of consistent “face time,” it may prove difficult to keep those participants, Brusselaers said.
“For patients, especially with those with certain backgrounds, there really is a benefit to having that trusted doctor,” he said. “Without physicians it is hard. In addition, they might not be tech savvy or even language savvy, so having community advocates work with health care professionals to help them navigate through it would make clinical trials more accessible.”
The article highlights several other companies helping with all the new or recently amplified struggles in keeping patients connected to clinical trial opportunities. We hope to continue to be a part of these important conversations and play a role in progress.