Building Flexibility, Responsiveness into Clinical Trial Patient Travel and Expense Programs Drives Referrals

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The Colpitts Clinical Team says that 80% of new business comes from trial sponsors and site coordinators who see the value in patient centric, customized clinical trial patient travel and expense programs.

“One patient who was traveling to the West Coast for the first time with their family found themselves lost in an area with no public transportation,” Johnston said. “Because of our 24/7 phone support, the patient was able to contact us directly and ask for assistance."

Features such as 24/7 phone support, custom accommodations for special requests, and the flexibility to adjust to last-minute changes all contribute to client retention and referral business in the clinical trial travel space, according to Colpitts Clinical. The clinical trial patient travel and expense services provider says 80 percent of its new business is attributed to referrals from clinical trial sponsors and site coordinators who work with Colpitts Clinical to arrange the logistics of patient travel and expenses.

“More companies are getting into the clinical travel space, but they don’t have 18 years’ experience in arranging patient travel, do not have a travel management background, may outsource the travel planning and management or don’t allow for the their travel coordinators to accommodate each patient’s individual needs,” Colpitts Senior Vice President Jeanne Johnston said.

Trial sponsors often cite patient recruitment and retention as one of their greatest challenges. Colpitts Clinical’ s travel programs are designed to ensure that the patient is able to get to the trial site with all the comfort and care they require, with no out of pocket expenses, which contributes to higher patient retention rates.

“One patient who was traveling to the West Coast for the first time with their family found themselves lost in an area with no public transportation,” Johnston said. “Because of our 24/7 phone support, the patient was able to contact us directly and ask for assistance. Without 24/7 support, this issue, whether it has anything to do with the clinical trial or not, could make the patient want to drop out of the trial, so patient support is always at the forefront for us.”

In other cases, Colpitts Clinical has been able to ensure patient participation by:

  • Arranging to ship a patient’s custom-fit wheelchair to the trial site;
  • Coordinating full daily room cleanings for patients who cannot be exposed to germs in hotel rooms;
  • Tracking down items left behind in a taxi or hotel.

Choosing a clinical travel provider that has industry partners around the world and an in-house team dedicated to clinical travel is key for patient recruitment and retention. Trials can be costly and time-consuming, which is why sponsors and site coordinators refer a company that they know will work to address even the most complicated medical or logistical challenges.

About Colpitts Clinical:    

Colpitts Clinical is one of the only full-service travel and expense management providers dedicated specifically to the clinical trial sponsors and patients. Headquartered in Norwood, Massachusetts, with European offices in Scotland, Colpitts Clinical is a division of Direct Travel, and has offices throughout the United States, Europe and the world. With our travel management network, Colpitts has access to more than 85 countries, 17 billion in purchasing power and the ability to deliver solutions customized to the needs of its biotechnology and pharmaceutical clients, while minimizing costs and ensuring regulatory compliance.

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Jeanne Johnston
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