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The Top 5 Takeaways from SCOPE Summit: Shifting Power Dynamics, Site Enablement, and More

Last week, the annual SCOPE Summit brought together leaders in the clinical research industry to discuss the latest trends and challenges. 

The conference highlighted the shifting power dynamic in clinical research, with sites now at the top of the value chain. In this post, our CEO, Ryan Jones, summarizes his top five insights, including the rise of site enablement, the need to become the “sponsor of choice,” the saturation of point solutions, and the need for integrations to improve clinical trial efficiency.

1. Sites Are Now at the Top

The power dynamic in clinical research has shifted. While sponsors used to hold all the influence due to their financial resources, sites now have more power due to their labor capacity and patient access.

This shift in power has forced sponsors to work more collaboratively with sites and provide them with the resources they need to succeed.

2. Site Enablement is the New DCT

Decentralized clinical trials (DCTs) were all the rage in 2021, but in 2023, site enablement has taken the spotlight. Site enablement refers to the tools, resources, and support that sponsors provide to sites to help them successfully conduct a clinical trial.

This includes things like site selection, training, and technology support. With sites now at the top of the value chain, sponsors are prioritizing solutions that help sites first.

3. Becoming “Sponsor of Choice” is the New Mandate

With limited site resources and competition among therapeutic candidates, winning the race to approval means winning the hearts and minds of sites doing the work.

Sponsors are realizing that they need to do more than just provide funding to be successful in clinical research. They need to provide the support and resources that sites need to be successful, as well as build strong relationships with them. This means listening to their needs, being responsive to their concerns, and providing them with the tools and resources they need to succeed.

4. We’ve Reached Peak Point-Solution

The exhibit hall at SCOPE was more crowded than ever before with copycat point solutions in all categories. Point solutions refer to technologies that address specific problems or challenges in clinical research, such as patient recruitment or data management.

While these solutions can be helpful, there are now so many of them that it can be overwhelming for sponsors and sites to choose the right ones. This has led to a desire for more integrated solutions that can address multiple challenges at once.

5. Integrations are a Platform

Big technology players are now aiming to support sponsors and sites with new integration plays that unify best of breed technologies. This means that sponsors and sites can use a single platform that integrates multiple solutions, rather than having to juggle multiple point solutions.

By doing this, they can reduce the complexity of clinical research, streamline processes, and ultimately improve the efficiency and success of clinical trials.

Final Thoughts

As clinical research continues to evolve, sponsors and sites will need to adapt and work together to ensure the success of clinical trials.

We’re excited to be at the center of this revolution at Florence Healthcare, as we work with our network of 12,000 research sites in 45 countries, our nearly 100 sponsor and CRO customers, and other vendor partners to design the future of Site Enablement.

I’m excited to see what SCOPE 2024 brings, and hope to see more topics and sessions on how sponsors and CROs can enable their trial sites to do their best work.