Choosing a professional, performance-oriented patient recruitment service provider from a list of possible candidates is very likely going to be a challenging affair especially considering that each provider brings to the table different levels of experience, capacity, and job know-how. To find out who will be your provider of choice therefore, you should know what questions to ask, expected responses, and what your selection criteria will be based upon. Only this way will you be able to find a provider whose patient recruitment strategies will work to the benefit not detriment of your planned medical study.
Each potential provider should be ready to wholly reveal its past as well as the identities of those behind its operations. In this, ask whether or not the company has previously operated under a different identity. It is sometimes the case that company identities are changed so as to cover past tracks that may elicit a need for scrutiny. Nonetheless, an identity change may just be for marketing purposes, and so on. Inquire to establish when the firm was founded, who its executives are and their backgrounds, for what duration its team members will be serving, and also go through its permanent references.
After clarifying the above, each potential patient recruitment firm should prove that it is up to the task with regards to how it will surmount the constraints of the exercise. Stiff deadlines are synonymous with medical trials and so a recruitment firm should demonstrate its capacity for flexibility and quick thinking. How fast and meticulously each firm provides answers to your question will help you to gauge how well its response to the demands of the actual exercise will be. You preferably want a firm that will place more concern on meeting your cut-off dates than its process.
Patient recruitment as an exercise must be given enough publicity so that awareness about an impending clinical trial can reach as many volunteers as possible. To this end, each potential recruitment service provider firm must give details of how it goes about buying media services. Be wary of firms that have rigid guidelines about whatever media they opt for – flexibility is crucial here. You also want a firm that values the importance of selecting media that will effectively reach the targeted audience. Additionally, avoid firms that urge you to buy media in bulk; it’s best to buy media in intervals so that you can measure the viability of each approach. This way you will retain control of your media budget and you’ll also get high-yielding results.
Each potential recruiter should also be asked to explain how frequently details of recruitment metrics will be submitted to you. You ideally want to work with a firm that can provide these details in real-time or at best continuously. Find out what type of metrics you can expect to receive, how data will be analyzed and by whom, and how frequently the analysis will be done. The importance of receiving real-time analyzed data about an ongoing clinical recruitment exercise cannot be understated – this is indeed the only way to promptly identify aspects of patient recruitment strategies that are performing well and those that are not.
Next, you need to know about each firm’s patient retention expertise level. The firm to work with will display an imperative understanding of the essentials of patient education relations and site relations i.e. the ability to know what must be done to keep both patients and trial coordinators motivated and focused for the entirety of the medical trial.
Patient recruitment strategies: What to ask a potential recr