In February we spoke to co-chair of the Decentralized Trials & Research Alliance Craig Lipset about how the organization is attempting to "accelerate the adoption of patient-focused, decentralized clinical trials”. Since then the DTRA has reached 100 members across pharma, CROs, technology and service providers, advocacy groups, site networks and regulators - double what they started with in December. We caught up with him to find out the latest developments.
Last time we spoke you were working on initiatives, how is that going?
"We have confirmed 12 initiatives that align to our four priority areas; definition, best practices, education and removing remaining barriers. For each of those we have three defined initiative for which we are now starting to populate initiative teams with our members. Within the next month we'll be able to communicate what these initiatives are.
We will identify both subject matter experts to work on these initiatives from the different companies, but also some co- leads from our member companies who will be the champions for those different initiatives. In the coming months, we will then begin to see some of the voices from members of DTRA speaking about their initiatives and their work.
There may be some information that is competitive that they have to hold back, and that's understandable, but there is so much that people want to be able to share. They are hungry for sustaining platforms, so certainly from a best practice perspective, having a sustainable model for how organizations can share best practices with one another is essential.
In almost a Wikipedia-like way, we don't want just a freewheeling posting of anything that one person thinks is a best practice - there does have to be a little community vetting around this. Best practices in our space are highly dynamic so we need a dynamic digital space for these to continue to grow and evolve based on the experiences that organizations are having right now."
You also spoke of quick wins that can make an immediate impact - do you have any examples of that yet?
"What I hear from some members, and particularly in pharma, is a tremendous sense of urgency to leverage the momentum for change that is here with us today to establish commitments in the organization. Organizations get distracted and these leaders want to make sure that there is a version 1.0 established in their organization. Even if it's not perfect, they will always then get 1.1 and 1.2, but if they don't have that version 1.0 they will lose this momentum.
Therefore, roughly two-thirds of our initiatives will have some readout next year. We are very committed to be able to give back something not just to our members, but to the community next year."