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You can play a significant part in developing new treatments by becoming a participant in a clinical trial. Together, we can offer hope to millions of people impacted by disease.

What is a clinical trial?

The aim of clinical research is to develop and improve the prevention, detection and treatment of disease. Clinical trials are a major component of this type of research. They help determine the potential impact that discoveries made in a laboratory can have on people in the real world.

Every clinical trial has a specific purpose and objective. It might be to determine the safety and effectiveness of a new medication or to investigate different applications or combinations of existing treatments. It may even be to find more precise ways of diagnosing and monitoring illness.

Clinical trials can be categorised into one of four major phases based on what scientists are trying to determine. This ensures that vital information on how people respond can be collected and assessed in the fastest and safest way.

  1. Phase I

    Clinical Trials

    How safe is this?

  2. Phase II

    Clinical Trials

    How effective is this?

  3. Phase III

    Clinical Trials

    Is this better then current treatments?

  4. Phase IV

    Clinical Trials

    What are the long-term effects?

  5. Regulatory

    Approval Granted

    Can be prescribed outside of a clinical trial

Clinical trials follow a carefully-regulated process

The idea of participating in a trial can be very daunting, especially if you have never been involved in one before. Negative and overly-dramatic depictions of clinical trials in the media can further increase concerns and even contribute to the misconception that people who participate in clinical trials are “guinea pigs”. This assertion is incorrect on many accounts. Clinical trials cannot be carried out unless there is adequate information available on how the medication or medical device may work and what potential benefits and possible side effects (termed ‘adverse events’) may occur. This information is documented in a detailed study protocol, which also outlines the criteria that participants need to meet in order to take part. The protocol also confirms the duration of the research, the type and schedule of medical tests plus specific instructions about the experimental elements of the trial. All of this information is independantly assessed in a rigourous and highly-regulated way and must pass stringent safety and ethical standards before approval is given for the trial to commence.

Clinical trials are carried out in a variety of medical facilities including public and private hospitals, medical and communty health clinics and at independant research centres such as Emeritus Research. A team of qualified doctors, nurses, pharmacists, scientists and pathologists are typically assigned to a clinical trial. This team of experts are continuously monitoring the health and wellbeing of every participant including any positive impacts or adverse events. This is to ensure the safety and ethical aspects of the trial continue to be met. In Australia, the bodies that are responsible for the regulation, assessment and monitoring of clinical trials are Human Research Ethics Committees (HREC), the pharmacuetical companies running the clinical trials, the clinical trial sites conducting the medical assessments and the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA).

At Emeritus Research, we work hard to establish a caring and considerate relationship with our participants, and try to ensure that they see the same doctors and nurses for each appointment. Everything we do is underpinned by an ethical framework that values the individual partnership we have with every patient. This collaborative approach means that your rights, views and principles are not just acknowledged but are actively respected.

What reasons to be people give for participating?

The reasons that participants give enrolling in a clinical trial are as many and as varied as the actual participants themselves! It can be to receive new treatments that are not currently available to the wider population or to gain access to additional medical and nursing care that is often unattainable in standard health care settings. Altruistic reasons including the desire to be actively involved in scientific research or the knowledge that that be being involved in a trial, this could help countless others now and in the future.

If you require any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us via telephone (+61 3 9509 6166) or by completing the form below. We are more than happy to answer any questions or concerns that you have.

Alternatively, interested in taking the next step to participating in a clinical trial? See our current clinical trials for information on the latest research studies at Emeritus Research.