Despite the rising popularity of mobile health applications in clinical trials throughout the globe, their use in Latin America is still rare. However, these tools have enormous potential for use in clinical research, patient monitoring, compliance, patient support, diagnostics, and preventions. We’re going to look into the benefits of using mobile health applications and their increasing prominence and demand throughout the region.
Dr. Federico Pérez Manghi, Medical Director of CINME (Metabolic Research Center) and a principal investigator with over 13 years of experience specializing in Internal Medicine and Nutrition in Argentina, is a huge proponent of utilizing technological advancements to effectively bolster both patient and site engagement. Upon reviewing and utilizing BBK’s new mobile app My Clinical Study Buddy®, a mobile platform specifically customizable for clinical trials, Dr. Manghi reinforces how, “the app is a useful tool not only for the patient, but also for the site staff and investigators. One great feature being the study visit reminder, which is customized according to each clinical study protocol.” In Dr. Manghi’s experience, this improves overall study compliance, reduces protocol deviations, and educates the patient on the specifics of the clinical trial they are enrolled in. As complexities of long-term clinical trials can pose difficulties for patients as well, the My Clinical Study Buddy® app keeps patients informed and tuned in right at their fingertips.
When it comes to site engagement, My Protocol PalSM offers the world’s first clinical R & D site-facing communication platform. According to Dr. Manghi, some of the most outstanding features are the prescreening tools, which allow investigators to assess clinical data while having immediate access to the protocol’s inclusion and exclusion criteria, as well as real-time access to developing metrics which “allows for the implementation of new resources and strategies as soon as enrollment is not evolving as expected.” The app also provides site and patient support for the ancillary aspects of clinical research. For reimbursement support, the RSG® Card, a reloadable card, better facilitates the processing of patient expenses, receipts, and patient reimbursement while maintaining financial transparency, order, and systemization across sites and protocols.
Somewhat shadowed by the numerous benefits of, and mounting interest in, mobile health apps, there are also logistical and economical challenges that prevail throughout Latin America. Mobile devices are not widely available among Argentina’s clinical trial patient population, and mobile internet connectivity is not nearly as reliable as it is in the U.S. Additionally, 60% of the Latin American population does not have a bank account, so mobile financial services are not as widely available. However, as site staff, patients, and investigators continue to advocate for clinical innovation throughout their industry, technological advances are becoming mainstay as interest and demand increases. As BBK works alongside these clinical thought leaders such as Dr. Manghi and study communities, we are not only able to expand our technological suite of products and services, but also effectively facilitate the expansion of those platforms to better optimize study operations and deliver an unparalleled engagement experience for patients and sites in Argentina and around the world.
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