Interested in joining a clinical trial at Northern California Research? It’s simpler than you think.
While Northern California Research makes the process easy, there are still a few things to keep in mind if you’re considering joining a clinical trial. The easiest way to learn about new and upcoming Sacramento trials? Sign up for the researchers’ newsletter here.
“I would we have say 10,000 patients in our database. So, we’ll reach out to their current email,” says Laurie Johnson, site director at Northern California Research. “We’ll mail out letters, but we always start there.”
Many patients are recruited via word of mouth as well, Johnson says. Patients share information with friends, family and other acquaintances that may benefit from participating in a trial. Additionally, many patients are repeat customers who fit the criteria for new and upcoming trials.
Clinical trials fall into three phases, which have different requirements and expectations depending on the drug or treatment in question. Phase I trials are usually the first step in testing on humans and may include only a small number of patients. Phase II evaluates how well the treatment works and may last considerably longer. Phase III compares the results with standard treatment patients may receive and, if approved, is sent for peer review and further approval by the FDA.
Johnson says once Northern California Research accepts a trial, they’ll send a newsletter out to their database. If you meet the criteria, you can apply directly and get started quickly. Even if you don’t fit one trial’s needs, there may be another down the line that works for you.
But what does it look like once you begin? At your first appointment, you’ll get an informational packet that outlines everything you need to know about the clinical trial you signed up for. This includes registration and informed consent forms. You can receive this by mail or email, but depending on the trial, you may need to sign a new copy of these forms from time to time, so keeping a copy in your email might be handy. Otherwise, you can sign forms once you get to the office, located in Sacramento.
Most common questions
Johnson says the most common questions patients have include who’s funding the trial or how much information they need to provide. “They’re apprehensive about the process,” she says. “We don’t use your names. Everything’s done by initials or year of birth.”
Overall, Northern California Research works hard to make patients feel taken care of. You should let your doctor know if you agree to participate in a clinical trial. Northern California Research will work with your doctor to make sure your health is prioritized.
Learn more about Northern California Research at www.northerncaliforniaresearch.com or call 916-484-0500.