Clinical trials are crucial for the advancement of medical knowledge and patient care. They help researchers to discover new and improved treatment methods and better ways to prevent side effects. These medical advances wouldn’t be possible without people agreeing to participate in clinical trials. Sadly, most people shun clinical trials. For instance, only 5% of adult cancer victims participate in clinical trials. There are several myths about clinical trials that contribute to this poor participation rate by patients, and this article seeks to debunk some of these myths.
Participants are human guinea pigs
Many people are hesitant to participate in clinical trials out of the fear that they will be treated like guinea pigs, but nothing can be further from the truth. Clinical trial participants are treated like human beings with medical needs rather than a set of symptoms upon which to test an investigational and unapproved treatment method. Every clinical trial goes through comprehensive reviews, and there are guidelines to ensure clinical trial volunteers are treated ethically and fairly.
Before investigational drugs are administered to clinical trial volunteers, researchers must complete thorough screening processes, which can take several years. In addition, clinical trial companies like H Clinical take participants through an informed consent process to help them understand their rights.
Clinical trial volunteers lose control of their personal health information
Participants’ clinical data help healthcare providers make informed treatment decisions. It also helps scientific researchers to build on research more easily. While sharing clinical information is important, a lot of clinical trial participants may be concerned about the privacy of their personal information.
It is not true that you lose control of your personal information health information once you sign up for a clinical trial. As part of the informed consent process, volunteers are informed about all the personal data that will be collected, how it will be used and safeguarded. In addition, the clinical data collected is normally separated from identifiers specific to a clinical trial participant, like individual names, since it isn’t needed for statistical analyses.
All clinical trials use placebos
A placebo is a product that is similar to an investigational drug but has no therapeutic effect or active ingredients. A placebo may be used in a clinical trial, but only if there is no available treatment or the condition is not debilitating or life-threatening. However, this is clearly stated in the consent form that a volunteer has to review before signing up for a clinical trial, and you would never participate in a clinical trial and not know it included a placebo.
Clinical trials are costly
Clinical trial volunteers rarely have to cover any costs related to participating in a clinical trial. Normally, research and patient care costs are covered by the sponsoring organizations. However, you should confirm with the clinical research team whether there are any costs that will be your responsibility before you sign up for a clinical trial.
Clinical trials are crucial in discovering new drugs, as well as new ways to diagnose and minimize the risk of disease. While they are not without risks, their benefits outweigh their potential risks.