Reify Health has announced pharmaceutical firm AstraZeneca has opted to use the StudyTeam patient enrollment platform to help accelerate clinical development along its breast cancer pipeline. Reify CEO and cofounder Ralph Passarella spoke with Outsourcing-Pharma about the partnership, and how his company’s cloud-based technology offers the potential to improve trial efficiency and outcomes.
OSP: Could you please share the ‘elevator presentation’ description of StudyTeam—key features, the types of sites and studies it’s best suited for, and any notable trials it’s been used for (as much detail as you can share)?
RP: StudyTeam is a technology platform that connects sponsors to the workflow of clinical research sites around the world. StudyTeam today is primarily focused on accelerating enrollment by helping sites pre-screen and enroll patients more effectively from a variety of sources and by giving sponsors visibility into recruitment activity live, which they’ve never had before.
For sites, StudyTeam supercharges their workflow and eliminates redundancies. For sponsors, StudyTeam enables them to be active participants and trusted partners; sponsors have the confidence and ability to take control of enrollment outcomes sooner thanks to real-time reporting and collaboration.
We built this technology for sites, working directly with them to understand their pain points and how to run trials more effectively. It includes a database of research patients, a recruitment pipeline manager, i.e. checklist, smart matching of patients across all records, and easy scheduling.
Now, StudyTeam helps sites manage patients downstream of enrollment as well. StudyTeam for Sites is also connected to StudyTeam for Sponsors, allowing the sponsor’s protocol to come to life in the site’s workflow and allowing sites to easily share valuable information with sponsors. The technology is completely free for sites and they can use it across all of their studies to support more efficient enrollment.
All of this and more is why more than 3,000 research sites and seven of the top 10 global biopharma companies -- including AstraZeneca, Eli Lilly and Company, and Amgen -- use StudyTeam.
OSP: Specifically, how does this technology help optimize patient enrollment and engagement?
RP: Sites currently operate multiple, disparate systems and are responsible for engaging patients and meeting lofty objectives. The StudyTeam technology enables sites to see everything at a glance and take control. Sites clearly know what actions they need to take and can work together as a team more effectively to do so.
On the sponsor side, without this technology, sponsors don’t have visibility into which studies are off track before it’s too late. Approximately 80% of all clinical trials fail to meet objectives and 50% of research sites enroll one or zero patients. That’s where StudyTeam steps in to help; sponsors can easily identify problems as they happen.
For example, if certain recruitment tactics aren’t yielding actionable results, sponsors can reevaluate and adjust in real-time to redistribute resources and ensure sites are able to achieve enrollment goals.
OSP: Can you share any detail on how you first started discussions and working with AZ?
RP: We’ve worked with AstraZeneca since 2019, initially starting with one breast cancer study, which has since evolved to AstraZeneca’s entire investigational breast cancer portfolio. AstraZeneca wants to reduce the burden on their sites and find ways to work together to achieve their clinical development objectives. StudyTeam sits at the intersection of these goals.
Before we released StudyTeam, we spent a lot of time evaluating the incentives and current state workflows at sites and sponsors. We wanted to develop a technology platform that was an obvious win for both sites and sponsors - not just something that sponsors found valuable and sites were willing to tolerate.
We also worked to ensure StudyTeam was a unique solution serving a real pain for sites and for sponsors. The years of research that included input from hundreds of site and sponsor staff allowed us to produce something that should feel like a “no brainer” for sites and sponsors alike.
OSP: Do you have anything you’d like to add, about this partnership with AZ or anything else?
RP: AstraZeneca has been an amazing partner for us, due in no small part to the fact they have engaged their site partners and really listened to what they have heard. As our industry begins to look beyond the pandemic, I will continue to publicly reinforce the importance of sponsors taking time to deeply understand the challenges that site staff face in running trials.
Research coordinators are all problem-solving trial-by-trial to operationalize a sponsor’s protocol. They often know better than anyone the biggest challenges to successfully enrolling and delivering trials. We need to ask for their input and listen when they give it.