Medidata, a Dassault Systèmes company, has published a report, ‘European Industry Research Report: The Future of Clinical Trials’.
The report draws on new independent research that includes insights from 400 clinical trial executives across the U.K., France, Germany and Switzerland. They were surveyed to gain a deeper understanding of how clinical trials have changed over the past two years, including the increased adoption of new technologies, and what the future holds.
The report is part of ongoing efforts at Medidata to understand the evolution of technology usage in clinical research and the needs of sponsors, partners and patients.
When the pandemic struck, it brought challenges for clinical trials and, as a result, companies and sites conducting clinical trials were forced to look at leveraging technology wherever possible to support the continuation of research.
Medidata said the industry is now emerging stronger than ever with a more technology-driven approach that will benefit the industry and the patients it depends on.
The report says clinical trial processes have changed for the better. It says organizations had to adapt quickly to continue their operations as the pandemic spread. These changes have improved clinical trials.
More than a third of respondents (37%) rank better outcomes of clinical trials since the pandemic as being within the top three areas of improvement, and 36% say recruitment and enrollment into trials were also better, as well as better patient experiences.
Also, 99.7% of respondents believe all or some improvements to the clinical trial process as a result of the pandemic are here to stay.
The report of Medidata also notes the demand for decentralized solutions continues to rise. Decentralization and patient-centric practices have been core elements of change and organizations anticipate these solutions will become increasingly widespread.
Respondents stated that the average number of studies including at least one decentralized technology before the pandemic was 43%, the current average is 55% and the predicted average in five years is 66%.
From big data and growing computer power to wearable technology and artificial intelligence (AI), the report says organizations are adopting new innovative tools and solutions – and they are here to stay.
92% of those surveyed say clinical trials in their country always or frequently rely on technology. And when asked what technology holds the most promise in the future of clinical research, 36% placed AI in the top three.
The report also says patient centricity continues to be a key focus. Patients are central to clinical research and there is greater recognition that trials need to be designed around them.
The majority of respondents (92%) believe clinical trials are more patient-centric than ever following the pandemic.
Real change, bright future
“Our new research shows the resilience of the industry, how it implemented its learnings from the pandemic and how it is embracing technology for the benefit of patients,” said Pete Buckman, EMEA site leader and senior vice president of professional services at Medidata.
“At Medidata, we have seen real change in the way clinical trials are approached and we are excited to see even more innovation and progress. By continuing to challenge current models, investing in new technologies and collaborating across all stakeholders, the industry can further improve clinical trial processes and, in turn, the outcomes. The future of clinical trials and drug development looks bright.”
The research was compiled by independent research firm Vanson Bourne and sponsored by Medidata.