Target Health Blog

Transitioning Clinical Trial Paper Source Records to the Digital World

April 30, 2018

What's New

We would appreciate any thoughts on the following.

Back in the “old days,“ data collected from paper source records were transcribed to paper case report forms, which were then “mailed“ to the pharma company to perform data entry. When EDC systems were established, the pharmaceutical industry transferred the transcription of these data, by the sites, to the EDC systems. As a result, with the concept of the need to perform 100% source document verification (SDV), the workload for both the sites and CRAs did not change. What did change was that data entry into electronic databases no longer was performed by pharmaceutical companies or CROs, but was now performed by the sites.

The whole idea behind efficiencies of electronic systems is interoperability. Nevertheless, there is a new phenomenon on the horizon which is perhaps being perceived as an advantage by clinical research sites. The sites are now being being told that they can create their own electronic source documentation, not dissimilar from creating a paper source record. The big question is not about the validation of these systems, which of course could be an issue, but how these data are mapped and eventually transferred to the study database. We were told recently, that sites are re-entering these electronically collected source data into EDC systems by opening 2 screens, and then entering the data a second time. Are we going to end up with just another version of SDV? Imagine having to deal with transferring these data from multiple site source systems into one or more EDC systems. This challenge is also not different where source data are collected within multiple EMR systems.

There are several alternative solutions to support the paperless clinical trial by eliminating or reducing paper source records generated by the sites. Target Health has developed and implemented a patented bring-your-own-device (BYOD) web-based system, that allows for direct data at the time of the office visit, with the simultaneous creation of  electronic source documents. This user friendly system allows for the generation of read-only files maintained under the control of the sites, prior to the data being transferred to the EDC database. There now both FDA and EMA approval of products developed using our system. Other systems include dedicated tablets that are distributed to the clinical sites that also allow for direct data entry at the time of the patient encounter. In addition, real-time transfer of data from multiple EMR systems into one EDC data base is in the very near future, as well as direct capture and integration of data coming from mobile devices. 

Springtime in NYC

Finally Spring has arrived in NYC. ©Target Health Inc. April 2018

For more information about Target Health contact Warren Pearlson (212-681-2100 ext. 165). For additional information about software tools for paperless clinical trials, please also feel free to contact Dr. Jules T. Mitchel. The Target Health software tools are designed to partner with both CROs and Sponsors.

Joyce Hays, Founder and Editor in Chief of On Target

Jules Mitchel, Editor

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