How patient group collaborations increase patient recruitment success

If you haven’t heard already, patient research is one of the most valuable assets to a patient recruitment campaign. Seriously though, if you haven’t considered patient research to inform your patient recruitment strategies, then think again.


A look into the patient’s world

Insights like these offer you a patient perspective on everything clinical trial related, across all stages of clinical trial participation. From this, you can easily determine the weak spots in your clinical trial in the eyes of the patient, and you can begin making adjustments to help minimise patient burden, and ultimately improve patient recruitment.

Here are a few patient perspectives that may contribute to lower patient recruitment rates:


  • Limited understanding of the clinical trial process
  • Low awareness of currently-recruiting clinical trials
  • Perceived risk and benefits
  • Concerns about confidentiality
  • Concerns about heavy patient burden


How do we do patient research?

One of the best ways to obtain insights through patient research is through patient advocates. In other words, you need to utilise connections with patient advocacy groups (PAGs). Through simply hosting advisory boards with members of PAGs, this enables sponsors and contract research organisations (CROs) to get the insights they need to push their clinical research forward, knowing it is beneficial for everyone involved. Encouraging early collaboration with PAGs allows sponsors and CROs to get aligned on mutual goals from the very beginning. And by allowing PAGs to have a role, and allowing them to provide input, sponsors and CROs can expect to see a huge range of benefits.


So, what’s the benefit?

Research has shown that collaborations between sponsors, CROs and PAGs has profound positive impacts for clinical trials. In fact, research has shown that collaborations with patient advocacy groups have led to 20-30% overall reduction in cycle time, and an increase in patient participant rates by 15-20%.

In addition to this, the same research revealed that patient advisory boards have been shown to provide value in informing protocol design. Over the last 7–10 years, patient advisory boards have enabled an average of:


  • 3 visits removed from protocol schedules
  • 5 procedures removed from protocols
  • 8 changes to language on informed consent forms
  • 7 changes to study positioning and communication materials


If these stats don’t speak for themselves, we don’t know what will. Reducing barriers like these from clinical trials improves the convenience of clinical trials to patients, which has already been shown to:


  • Increase interest in participation
  • Increase patient satisfaction
  • Increase patient retention rates by up to 40%
  • Reduce study timelines by up to 35%


On top of this, modifications to the language used in patient facing materials in clinical trials have been shown to:


  • Improve patient recruitment rates by up to 20%
  • Improve patient retention rates by up to 50%
  • Increase patient satisfaction


Not bad, is it? When it comes to health conditions, patients are the experts. Only they know how it feels to have them, how it affects their daily life, and how they want their life to improve through the use of medications. This insight is invaluable to sponsors and CROs, as you’ll probably agree after reading all of those statistics.

Are you looking to involve patient insights from PAGs in your clinical trials? You’ve come to the right place. We would love to have a chat, so feel free to email us at Alternatively, we have tonnes of great information around our website too, so explore our other blogs for some more great insights.


Patient Recruitment Companies

Patient Recruitment Patient Partnerships

Natasha Welford

Natasha loves working closely with our PAG partner network, taking the time to understand the challenges they face on a more human level. She’s enthusiastic, engaged, and always laughing, making the office a great place to be while tackling the challenge of putting a plan into place.

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