By Neal Learner, Contributing Writer
People don’t think twice to pay bills on a smartphone, share experiences on social media, and even monitor sleep habits on wearable activity trackers. But when it comes to participating in a study to test a new therapy or medical device, we might as well be standing in line at the bank to deposit a paper check.
Clinical trials today look pretty much the way they did 25 years ago, with patients required to make regular trips to clinical research sites for in-person testing and hand-entered data collection.
Conducting remote clinical trials, by contrast, would bring the antiquated process into the twenty-first century, providing the kind of convenience and cost-saving efficiencies that other industries now take for granted. Study volunteers could report their data from home via mobile technologies directly to systems that would gather and analyze the figures in real time, while researchers could interact with patients via online portals to ensure they stay engaged and active.