Decentralized trials are here to stay, says United BioSource, which has partnered with “patient centric” healthcare tech firm Seqster PDM to bolster its remote study business.
Under the deal, United BioSource will use Seqster’s aggregation software and access to U.S. healthcare data sources to help customers take advantage of decentralized designs, according to Aaron Berger, executive director of real-world evidence (RWE).
“The Seqster solution allows us to design studies that capture rich longitudinal healthcare data from the patient directly instead of the traditional data acquisition model," he told us. “Seqster’s approach allows us to forego the cost and time associated with site-based data entry."
Berger also said he expects the technology and the enhanced access to data to help United BioSource recruit study participants faster and more efficiently.
United BioSource is not the only services firm to expand its decentralized trials capabilities of late. Last month, for example, Worldwide Clinical Trials teamed up with Science 37 to expand its remote study business.
A month prior, IQVIA signaled its interest in decentralized studies with the launch of mobile research nursing and phlebotomy services designed to “connect with clinical trial patients in their homes.”
The recent string of deals is a strong indication that demand for decentralized trials will remain even after the COVID-19 pandemic recedes, according to Berger.
“Most study designs now include one or more decentralized element. These ‘hybrid studies’ utilize some traditional elements and incorporate decentralized elements as appropriate for that specific research," he said. “Decentralized research had begun before the pandemic and was accelerated by the pandemic. Now that sponsors have seen some of its benefits, the door is open to continue pushing to utilize decentralization for the benefit of sponsors and patients alike.”
The partnership approach is something United BioSource would be willing to try to boost its decentralized trials business outside the U.S., according to Berger, who said “if the right opportunity arose with the right partner we would like to make that happen."