Constantly expanding complexities are putting a strain on the clinical trials sector. Operational complexity is likely to rise as sponsors and CROs like Veristat adopt decentralized clinical trials, create targeted medications, and move toward adaptive trial designs. To reduce the impact of complexity on your sites and patients, you’ll need to develop an integrated clinical trial ecosystem. However, this calls for leaders to be prepared with responses that can help maintain trial schedules and data accuracy without putting unnecessary strain on trial sites or patients. How can technology aid teams in navigating trial complexity without causing them to fail?

Complexity in clinical trials isn’t a bad thing.

There are various contributors to the increasing complexity of clinical studies. For instance, each year brings new advances in precision medicine, particularly in oncology, necessitating more extensive trial planning. Researchers need additional biomarkers and genetic information at every stage, including screening, to develop these therapies. Additionally, as the industry rapidly adopts these technologies, the complexity of carrying out virtual clinical trials and hybrid trial protocol designs rises. These complexities, though, do have their benefits. Some of the new information helps researchers find new ways to treat diseases or find new uses for treatments they already have. Advanced trial designs will make clinical research accessible to patients and communities. So, even if these changes are more complex, they represent progress and optimism for patients. Is complexity unavoidable? Most likely yes, and clinical operations leaders need to be okay with it if they want to be successful in the future of clinical trial management.

Why reducing complexities Isn’t enough

There have been efforts to reduce or eliminate the complex parts of clinical trial processes. However, technological advancement has led to a dramatic increase in data collection and management, which in turn reflects the shifting nature of clinical trial design.  Some institutions have started evaluating protocols according to a patient burden index to simplify things. While others are putting their money on the site, patient feedback, or authoring tools. Some companies are using cross-functional internal review groups to improve the usefulness of protocols. Along with these measures, teams are assessing the efficacy of their current eClinical suite to speed up future trials. Fortunately, adding new data points and processes doesn’t always necessitate new technology. As modern trials evolve, so too has clinical trial management software (CTMS), which is now a cutting-edge tool for streamlining the process.

How CTMS handles trial complexities

The typical trial requires a large number of people, locations, and infrastructure. Clinical trials can now accommodate a broader range of stakeholders and sites since hybrid technology has reduced or eliminated the need for conventional in-person operations. The day-to-day tasks of managing research operations, monitoring site staff performance, subject visits, and payment status can become more challenging as ecosystems expand. Workflow consolidation lessens the amount of disjointed data and ensures that all members of a team have access to the most recent study material. The risk of missing out on crucial information about study milestones, issues, and performance is greatly reduced with the help of a system that continually monitors data from multiple sources, allowing research teams to reap the benefits of a “one-stop-shop” for insights into trial planning, operations, and execution.

Managing trial complexity will remain a clinical research challenge. Therefore, teams should equip themselves with technologies that reduce manual efforts and complexity through unified trial management rather than trying to stop change.