Filling Gaps in the Global Clinical Trial Supply Chain
How these gaps affect patient retention.
Where are there gaps in the global clinical trial supply chain? Sam Herbert, President, discusses.
The biggest thing will always be losing a patient. So given the challenges around patient recruitment and retention, any lost shipment has a potential to have a patient miss a treatment on a protocol or a patient to drop out or a patient not to be enrolled in the first place.
Every lost patient really sets back the trial, sets back the time to therapeutic benefit of patients, and sets back the time to return on investment that pharmaceutical companies are making.
As pharmaceutical companies focus more on orphan diseases where there’s a rare population base and are being driven globally for development, the population base is harder and harder to find. If you ask any pharmaceutical manufacturer what their concerns are, it’s always patient recruitment and patient retention, and the only way to really fundamentally solve that is to lessen the burden on a patient, which direct-to-patient does.
And I think we’ve made a lot of, uh, ground in this area, but there are still some gaps within the global supply chain.
If you think about it, people spend a huge amount of money moving a drug from Point A to Point B and making sure that it stays within that range. But as soon as we hand it off, either at the patient home or at a site, we lose some of that visibility to that product. And so both on the clinical side and on the commercial side, we’re seeing sponsors ask for more visibility.
I think overall on the clinical side where we’re moving towards is probably to fill out the integrity of the supply chain and make sure any shipment has the best packaging for that route or lane. And have that line of sight into the conditions of that product all the way through. So at site, at patient home, having complete visibility and integrity of the supply chain.