Issues

Access to early phase clinical trials at the time of the COVID-19 pandemic: an Italian survey

ABSTRACT
Italy was among the first countries hit by the pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The application of strict lockdown measures disproportionately affected both cancer patient care as well as cancer research.
A survey was conducted among Italian oncologists to explore whether and how the COVID-19 outbreak has changed their aptitudes and practice toward early phase studies before and during the COVID- 19 outbreak and suggestions to overcome the early phase clinical trial limitation in our country. A total of 137 physicians completed the survey. In the pre-pandemic period, 103 responders (75.2%) declared a positive aptitude at referring their patients to early phase unit but only 12.6% referred more than 10% of their patients. Of these, 35% declared a reduction in this aptitude during the pandemic period. The majority of responders believe that the COVID-19 pandemic will affect the new oncological drug’s marketing (62.3%). Over the COVID-19 pandemic, the majority of participants highlighted the necessity of an “alliance” between leader and satellite centers (59.8%), making the early phase unit distribution’s homogeneous on the national territory (37.2%).
Our work provides an overview of the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on aptitude at referral to early phase clinical studies among Italian oncologists.

IMPACT STATEMENT
These data offer a snapshot of the aptitude at referral to early phase clinical studies during COVID- 19 outbreak.

Table of Content: Vol. 2 (No. 1) 2022 March

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