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‘NUDGES’ FOR CLINICAL TRIAL RECRUITS REFINED, SD Union Tribune

The modern era’s dramatic advances in medical care rely on more than scientists, doctors and biomedical companies.

None of it could come to fruition without patients willing to risk trying experimental therapies to see whether they’re safe and effective.

More than 220,000 clinical trials are taking place worldwide, with more than 81,000 of them in the United States, according to the federal government’s registry, clinicaltrials.gov.

On one hand, that means many pursuits for better treatments. But the sheer number of clinical trials also poses a huge challenge for recruitment. Scientists not only have to find enough patients who fit each test’s specific criteria, but they also often need to find a diverse pool of participants in terms of gender, age, race and ethnicity.

Companies are offering a variety of inducements to coax patients into taking part. Some rely on that good old standby, cash. Others remove obstacles. Axovant Sciences, which is preparing to test an Alzheimer’s drug, is offering patients transportation from the ridesharing service Lyft.

Click here to read the full article by Bradley J. Fikes, San Diego Union Tribune