Icon launches new site to help connect patients to trials

Graphic of doctor and patient side by side
Icon wants to help boost patient recruitment by matching patients to their local trials. (Pixabay, Creative Commons CC0)

It’s a long-standing problem: There are tens of thousands of clinical trials ongoing around the world and millions of patients who could be involved, but only a small percentage of patients who can be matched to a study ever participate.

There are many reasons for this, but one of them is very simple: Patients don’t know what trials are going on near them or how they can be involved.

Biopharma service company and CRO Icon is hoping to bridge that knowledge gap using an online service that can provide patients with study-specific information including how they can get in on their nearest trial site.

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This, in turn, helps recruiters, as Icon says: “The solution supplements patient recruitment outreach by sites and increases visibility of potential study participants for sponsors and sites.”

Icon describes the site as an “easy-to-navigate, user-friendly interface [that] guides the patient to new and ongoing studies in their particular indication and a pre-qualification questionnaire helps to determine if the study is a right fit for them. This establishes connection with the site and the patient can then choose to contact the site or ask to be contacted for pre-screening,” boosting visibility and connectivity.

“Access to patients continues to be the biggest challenge for sponsors, impacting speed to market and overall drug development costs,” commented EB McLindon, senior vice president for site and patient solutions. “We have used our understanding of patients gained through managing thousands of trials to develop this patient engagement platform and ease the burden on sites and patients. This will increase the predictability and speed of patient recruitment."