I received this from someone I know and trust in the research community who prefers to remain anonymous. Nevertheless, it’s an important message to get out to policy makers, clinicians, and researchers. –Anthony
Some operational advice to the research community, especially the funders and study leaders, of high impact clinical interventions.
We have a dilemma/operational quandary for these studies during this ongoing pandemic.
These studies are asking urgent clinical questions and they are asked to do so quickly, yet the budgeting processes are such that they are too pecuniarious and too slow.
All of these studies should be collecting extensive biosamples, yet it is often the case that the responsibility for collecting, processing, and storing these samples falls upon the same clinicians that have to take care of these and many other patients.
The result is only limited samples are collected.
Instead of this, every site in a government funded clinical trial related to covid should be funded for study coordinators, individuals who consent the patients, individuals who obtain the specimens, technicians to process and store the specimens.
Yes this will increase the cost of such trials. That is one of the reasons the congress just approved billions for new research.
The planners of such trials ( the government and clinical organizers) should plan for greatly increased funding for each trial based on back of the envelope calculations that should take no more than an hour or two to complete.
We are losing the opportunity to collect vital information that will inform our approaches to the epidemic for years.
With most clinical research shut down, there many personnel (coordinators, research nurses, technicians) that are available. Finding qualified manpower should not be a problem.
What is needed is vision and a true sense of urgency.