New Tele-trial model for rural Australia

Orange Clinical Trials Centre in Central West New South Wales is leading the way in establishing a tele-trial pilot of a new clinical trial model that will open up the ASCOLT clinical trial to more regional and rural patients. Rural patients often experience difficulties in accessing clinical trials closer to home due to limited availability of clinical trial sites in rural and regional areas. Moreover, access to distant clinical trial sites involves long distance travel and associated expenses which pose barriers to participation of rural and regional patients in clinical trials.

The tele-trial model offers an opportunity to rural and regional patients to access clinical trials. This model allows the lead clinician researcher, from an established oncology clinical trial centre to consent, recruit and manage patients from rural and regional centres. The patient visits in the rural or regional centres are linked via videoconference in real time to the oncology clinical trial centre.

Recognising this innovative tele-trial model, the AGITG awarded the Orange Clinical Trials Centre the 2017 Outstanding Site Award. Upon receiving this Award, Medical Oncologist, Dr Rob Zielinski at the Orange Clinical Trials Centre, is quoted as saying;

“Like all cancer clinicians, the motivation for our work is providing the best care to our patients particularly enrolling them onto novel and exciting new clinical trials. Receiving this recognition as the outstanding AGITG trial site is a lovely accolade and testament to the tireless work from our trials team, the investigators and most of all our rural patients who continue to queue up in droves for clinical trials. For too long our rural population has either missed out on clinical trials or travelled very long distances to participate. We have proven without doubt that regional NSW has a great trials team and very eager patients. More trials need to be offered to our region so we can continue to improve the cancer care for our region. The tele-trial model and the pilot will be truly ground breaking as it will be the first of its kind in Australia.”