Hex image

Putting Patients First Through Data-Driven Solutions


Gaurav Bhatnagar, VP strategic feasibility, site and patient access, talks data-driven solutions and how they help us focus on patients.

Today’s drug development industry is an increasingly crowded landscape, with organizations often vying for the same patients for enrollment in trials. This reality presents challenges, including successfully recruiting a greater number of patients for trials and reducing any unnecessary cost in doing so. To combat these challenges, PPD is committed to developing solutions focused on the patient and supported by data and experience. By keeping patient centricity top-of-mind as we implement data-driven solutions, we can bend the cost and time curve while doing something meaningful for patients. Patient centricity is building a study that is relentlessly anchored to the patient and their needs, from design through delivery.

Patient centricity

PPD is deeply committed to keeping patients top of mind in everything that we do. By engaging with patients and caregivers, we’re able to provide education and transparency in the clinical trial process. We develop a real appreciation for disease burden and barriers to clinical trial participation. We recognize communication must flow both ways throughout the process, which is why we encourage our sponsors to solicit feedback on patient experience, as well as provide plain language summaries at the end of a trial. Aside from improving the patient experience, patient centricity has many other benefits: greater trust between us and the patient, more information to support future study efforts, and improved patient recruitment, retention and adherence, among others.

Incorporating patient-centric efforts into the clinical trial process requires time, effort and sometimes creativity—all of which come at additional cost. As our industry’s research pipeline continues to flourish, we recognize the need to balance what is right for the patient while minimizing the impact to our clients’ budgets. We believe that embedding some very simple, straightforward activities into the clinical trial process will accomplish both goals simultaneously.

Using data to support patients

Data-driven feasibility refers to the process of identifying the “best” sites to conduct a study.  Historically, this was a highly inaccurate, labor-intensive process for everyone involved—including the sites—using surveys and site-reported enrollment estimates, which were always cut in half. Now, using a variety of data sources (like electronic medical records and prescriber and payer data) we’re able to recommend sites with proven access to the desired patient population with a higher degree of confidence, using less time and money. PPD’s access to vast data repositories—and our enrollment solutions supported by that data—enables us to reach patients beyond the three percent that traditionally participate in clinical trials. Deploying data-driven approaches, PPD can quantify patient burden and protocol complexity, thus helping clinical programs manage that complexity.

By using PPD’s vast data sources and strategic relationships with patient support organizations and our site training programs we can connect patients directly with trials in their own community.  What could be more patient-centric than that?

PPD is committed to deploying new and creative ways to reach patients and connect them with clinical trials as care options. Effective application of available patient data sources enables those connections much more quickly and efficiently than ever before which benefits PPD, our clients and, most importantly, patients.