Despite evidence showing that clinical trials often fail or are delayed because of poor patient recruitment, there is surprisingly little guidance for trialists seeking to optimize their trial recruitment strategies. Clinical Trials Ontario (CTO) has been collaborating for the past few years on a project led by Dr. Jamie Brehaut of the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, the Canadian Breast Cancer Network (CBCN) and the Huntington Society of Canada in efforts to learn more about specific drivers and barriers to clinical trial participation in different communities. Results from this work are starting to be published, most recently with a paper published in the Journal of Clinical Epidemiology which describes an adaptable, behavioral theory-driven approach for designing pre-trial surveys of the barriers and drivers of trial participation.
CTO’s contribution to this project has been led by Dawn Richards, Director of Patient & Public Engagement. “As a part of our patient and public engagement efforts, CTO aims to help people learn about clinical trials and obtain the information necessary to make a choice about participating in a trial,” said Susan Marlin, CTO’s President and CEO. “In working with the Canadian Breast Cancer Network, the Huntington Society of Canada and the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, we have been able to develop a patient-focused and theory-guided survey to help the understand the perceived barriers and drivers of participation in trials.”