A Behind-the-Scenes Look: Sponsor Attitudes and Behaviors Regarding Patient Recruitment

Melynda Geurts, M.S.?

Vice President of Operations?Imperial Patient Recruitment and Engagement Group.


Melynda is a 22-year clinical research veteran with expertise that spans protocol planning, recruitment, retention, global regulations, emerging markets, and more. Melynda is a 2008 inductee into PharmaVoice magazine’s 100 Most Inspiring People in the Life Sciences.

Melynda in collaboration with Dan McDonald, B.S.(Vice President of Business Development, Imperial Clinical Research Services ) revealed the first of its kind survey aimed to understand the attitudes and behaviors of clinical operations personnel at sponsor companies related to patient recruitment.

The impact of slow enrollment in clinical trials is well known. What isn’t particularly well known is how sponsors tackle this challenge and how important of an issue it is internally.

Melynda and Dan were identifing next questions :

  • Who participates in the decision making process
  • What the work environment is like, including pressure and stress levels
  • How closely they track enrollment performance
  • What tactics they employ to drive enrollment
  • What resources or support they leverage to improve enrolment

Key Findings from the Survey

Aggregated responses from the survey shed new light on a topic which had previously been covered through anecdotal data from public information and interviews.

These key findings were uncovered:

Enrollment timelines may be improvingLess than half, 43 percent, of sponsor-managed studies were reported to have been delayed due to slow enrollment. Similar surveys of investigative sites conducted by well-known market research rms like CenterWatch report at least 80 percent of studies being delayed.

Formal recruitment plans are developed for most studies. The largest percentage of sponsors develop their own formal recruitment plans, while a third rely on a CRO or patient recruitment company. The balance turn to investigative sites to develop plans.

Many sponsors are still not tracking the performance of their recruitment strategies.

When asked if they measure the impact of recruitment campaigns, sponsors report:

On Patient Recruitment And Retention Summit will be revealed more insights and need-to-know information.

You will hear about developing the best recruitment and retention strategy, about the new regulation and impact on clinical trials, digitalization and e-recruitment and many other topics related to the patient recruitment and retention.

All covered topics and full list of the speakers in Event Programme.

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