In part one of this two-part blog series, we looked at the important role of healthy volunteers as participants in clinical studies. Volunteers are vital for serving as control cases and assisting with several forms of a given research trial, and healthy volunteers not only provide major value here, but also typically get paid for doing so — so it’s a win everywhere.
At AGA Clinical Trials, we’re regularly on the lookout for paid healthy participants in our clinical trials, which cover a wide range of conditions or issues. In today’s part two of our series, we’ll go over what healthy trial volunteers can expect when they sign up for any such study, and specifically the kinds of information you’ll be made aware of ahead of time.
First and foremost, study experts will go over all of the general expectations that you should have for the upcoming trial. What are the dates and times of your required visits/tests? What’s the expected duration of the trial? What type of activities will you be asked to perform (if any)? How will you be compensated for your time and effort?
If you’re unclear about any of these points, now is the time to ask questions. The study team should be more than happy to answer any and all of them to your satisfaction. Additionally, they’ll provide you with a Participant Information Sheet (PIS) that covers all of the same information in detail. It’s important to read this document carefully, as it will also outline any potential risks and side effects associated with the trial.
In addition, you will likely be signing an informed consent document that outlines your understanding of all of the aforementioned points, plus goes over elements like your ability to withdraw from the trial if you want to. This document is legally binding, so be sure that you’re comfortable with everything before signing.
Risks and Side Effects
As with any medical procedure or drug, there is always some inherent risk in participating in a clinical trial. However, study experts will go over these risks with you in detail, both verbally and on the PIS, so that you’re fully aware of what you’re getting into. You’ll also be asked to sign a consent form acknowledging that you understand and accept these risks.
Generally, the risks associated with any given trial will vary depending on the condition being studied and the treatments or procedures being tested. However, some common potential risks include adverse drug reactions, infection, and injury. Again, the study team will go over all of these risks in detail so that you know what to watch out for.
In addition to potential risks, there may also be some minor side effects associated with trial participation. For example, you may experience some discomfort or pain during tests or procedures. However, these side effects are usually mild and temporary.
On the flip side, it’s important to remember that there may be some potential benefits to participating in a clinical trial. For example, you may receive access to cutting-edge treatments or procedures that are not yet available to the general public. Additionally, you may be helping researchers learn more about a particular condition or treatment, which could help advance medical science as a whole.
If you’re thinking about signing up as a paid healthy volunteer for any clinical trial, consider these tips. For more on this, or to learn about any of our research studies for various conditions, speak to the pros at AGA Clinical Trials today.