Medable and Nova Scotia Health partner to increase clinical trial access in Canada

Steven Loeb · February 3, 2023 · Short URL:

Medable will allow thyroid cancer patients in Nova Scotia to connect with a physician via telehealth

Despite it it being Canada's second-smallest province by area, the population in Nova Scotia is particularly rural, with nearly 50% living in communities with a population of less than 1,000, according to the 2011 National Household Survey.

That means that when it comes to participating in clinical trials, this population faces particular hurdles: they are typically limited to a few locations, which would require frequent travel to participate in person.

To help solve this problem, the Nova Scotia Health Innovation Hub has turned to Medable, a decentralized clinical trial (DCT) platform, announcing a partnership for a two-year pilot study to improve access to clinical trials in the region. Launched in January of this year, the long-term goal of the study is to improve patient access and trial diversity across Canada.

"Both Medable and Nova Scotia Health share a commitment to increasing patient access to clinical trials, making the experience more convenient to fit within patient’s busy lives, and using innovation to drive continuous improvement," Sam Bavery, VP of Growth and Strategy at Medable, told VatorNews. 

Founded in 2015, Medable's platform offers its clients, which include clinical trial sponsors, such as pharma and biotech companies, as well as clinical research organizations who manage trials for those companies, features that include patient identification and site selection through AI and machine learning; digitized patient enrollment; and the ability to do trials in any country and in any language. 

The company also also provides them with remote patient monitoring, and the ability to see streaming data and patient data in real-time. 

Medable has so far deployed its software-as-a-service platform via more than 300 decentralized and hybrid clinical trials in 60 countries, serving more than one million patients and research participants globally.

Using Medable’s services, including its Total Consent Management and Televisit solutions, differentiated thyroid cancer patients in Nova Scotia will be able to speak with a physician without having to leave their home. 

"During the trial, we will be measuring the satisfaction of both the patient and the physician. We will be monitoring satisfaction with the technology as well as efficiency of the operations. Our goal is to learn how to best utilize the technology for principal investigator-led studies and sponsor-led studies," Bavery explained. 

Nova Scotia Health, which conducts around 400 clinical trials per year, also noted that one of its goals is to empower primary care providers to be more involved with their patients post-trial through a shared care model, supported by DCT technologies.

While Medable hasn't made specific commitments yet as to whether or not it will continue to facilitate the communication between PCPs and patients after this study is over, Bavery did say that the company has not ruled that out, and will base its decision on the outcomes of the trial.

"We are always exploring ways to expand use cases for the platform," he explained.

"First and foremost, we’re focused on providing patients with better access and increased support during the trial. That’s our primary success criteria. Additionally, we hope to gain learnings that allow us to scale and utilize our software on more studies, which will enable us to get more effective therapies to more patients faster."

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