CRAACO tackles ways to strengthen care, patient connection

By Jenni Spinner

- Last updated on GMT

(Katerina Sisperova/iStock via Getty Images Plus)
(Katerina Sisperova/iStock via Getty Images Plus)

Related tags Clinical trials Fda Patient centricity Patient recruitment patient engagement Merck Pfizer Sanofi

The 6th annual Clinical Research as a Care Option conference, taking place April 26-27, brings together experts seeking solutions to elevate the industry.

Increasingly, clinical trial professionals are seeking out ways to form connections between researchers, pharma leaders, physicians, patients, and other important parts of the drug development and healthcare equation. At this week’s virtual Clinical Research as a Care Option (CRAACO) Conference, individuals committed to elevating the clinical research industry will gather to discuss ways to strengthen those links, in the hopes of benefiting patients and other important stakeholders.

Kicking off this morning at 8:15 EST, CRAACO is an annual event bringing together pharmaceutical executives, research experts, regulators, contract research organizations, and patients and patient advocates. The sixth annual event (this year taking place online) will tackle a broad range of solutions that stand to improve patient recruitment, engagement, and experience; conserve costs; elevate patient outcomes; and more.

Everything that transpired this past year has demonstrated the urgency of integrating research and care to provide better health options for patients​,” said Andrew Goldstein, CRAACO conference producer. “By facilitating conversations throughout the pharma and healthcare ecosystems, we hope to sustain rapid progress in making clinical research accessible, equitable and affordable to patients and bring therapies to market faster and more efficiently​.”

On Monday, April 26 at 11:40 EST, acting commissioner of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Janet Woodcock will join Laura Esserman (professor of surgery and radiology at the University of California at San Francisco, and director of the university’s Carol Franc Buck Breast Cancer Center) for the session “A Vision for the Integration of Clinical Research and Care. The two will address the gaps in the integration of care and research, adaptive trial design solutions, ways to simplify trial activation, and more.

At 9 am EST on Monday, Diane Simeone, Perlmutter Professor of Surgery and Pathology, NYU Langone, and Director of the Pancreatic Cancer Center, NYU Perlmutter Cancer Center, will lead the opening keynote. Drawing upon her experience as a national PI leader on Precision Promise (an adaptive platform trial for metastatic pancreatic cancer), Simeone will discuss her perspective on how the industry might work toward building a better clinical trial ecosystem.

Also on Monday, at 2 pm EST, the session “Developing Infrastructure to Allow More Patients to Participate in Clinical Trials” brings together a group of hospital leaders to discuss their individual experience in building better operating models, as well as collectively address methods that could lead to more effective outreach to potential patients in diverse and underserved communities:

  • Teri Grieb, senior director for research at the Office of Research and associate dean for research strategy with the University of Michigan Medical School
  • Tesheia Johnson, deputy director and chief operating officer at the Yale Center for Clinical Investigation
  • Brian Sevier, chief operating officer with the Clinical and Translational Science Institute at the University of Florida
  • Denise Snyder, associate dean for clinical research at the Duke University School of Medicine

The session “How Diverse Community-Based Hospitals are a Lifeline to Saving Clinical Research” is scheduled Tuesday, April 27 at 2:40 pm EST. John Potthoff, CEO of Elligo Health Research, will join Christy Dueck, vice president and general manager of real-world data for Cerner, to talk about the important role inclusivity and building patient trust stands to play in the future of clinical research, the case for bringing together community hospitals and life-science companies, and more.

Additionally, experts from a range of pharmaceutical companies are scheduled to present at sessions, addressing a range of concerns. Companies slated to send representatives include Janssen, Sanofi, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Pfizer, Merck, and more.

The full agenda for the two-day CRAACO event and registration information is available at

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