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How to work effectively with study partners in clinical trials


Study partners are people that know the patient very well. Usually, study partners are family members and close friends and at the same time care for the patient. Study partners ensure that trial subjects take their medication, go to appointments and report back to the researchers how things are going in general.

Nevertheless, trials that require a study partner have an added challenge to their recruitment efforts. They don’t need to recruit just a single person, they always need to recruit a pair!

Specifically in Alzheimer’s research, study partners are key! They provide the actual patients with support, cheer them up if things aren’t that great and update the researchers about the patient's progress.

Study partners can also be the key for recruiting. A study, conducted by UCLA about the prevalence of study partners in Alzheimer’s trials found that 67% of study partners are spouses. Surprisingly, 90% of Alzheimer’s patients don’t have a spouse in the real world, and two-thirds of all Alzheimer’s patients are cared for by their children, children-in-law or grand children. In addition, half of these unpaid caregivers are under the age of 50.

This shows that recruiters miss a huge opportunity in the population, which they are not enrolling into trials. In fact, patient recruiters have concentrated mainly on spouses and justified this with the higher drop-out rates of non-spouse study partners. Concentrating on the children, in-laws, grand children or even close friends bears a huge potential to accelerate patient recruitment and recruiters have to become better with this!

CitrusLabs can help you to fill your trials who require a study partner faster and more cost-efficient. With our unique database, we have a huge population of children, grandchildren, in-laws and also spouses who would love to participate with the loved-one in a trial. Get in touch today to learn more.


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