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UAB Medicine Helps Patients Participate in Clinical Trials

UAB Medicine is now making it easier for our patients and others to find and potentially register for ongoing clinical studies by launching XpertTrial, a new clinical trial search engine.

Patients cite a lack of awareness of appropriate trials as the main barrier to participation, according to a study published in the Journal of Community Oncology. In fact, only 16 percent of cancer patients surveyed knew that clinical trials were an option for them. However, once patients learn about clinical trials, 43 percent of those eligible decide to participate. XpertTrial helps people find clinical trials that might be beneficial by allowing potential participants to type in a specific diagnosis and search all relevant clinical trials at UAB Medicine.

“Many people come to UAB Medicine for the leading-edge clinical care that they will receive,” says Robert Kimberly, MD, director of the UAB Center for Clinical and Translational Science. “Clinical research, including clinical trials, is one of the ways that patients coming to UAB can know that they are receiving excellent care. The ability of patients to learn about clinical trials at UAB that they may wish to participate in advances that research and advances the knowledge that underpins our clinical care.”

XpertTrial was created by Birmingham-based XpertDox as a search engine with 50,000 keywords for diseases, procedures, symptoms, and specialties that are matched to a list of active trials at UAB Medicine. The UAB clinical trial search site is active, and after a “soft opening,” there has been a steady increase in interest and clicks.

Expanding research participation is good for UAB Medicine and our patients. “This platform enables potential participants and/or families of potential participants to learn about the innovative clinical care that is available at UAB. This is intended not only for current UAB patients but also for patients who might want to come to UAB,” Dr. Kimberly says.

Some 600 clinical studies are underway at UAB, including trials seeking more effective treatments for cancer, heart and lung disease, and immune system-related conditions such as arthritis and certain infections. The number of studies seeking participants varies almost daily as new trials begin and others reach capacity enrollment.

Visit XpertTrial to learn more and begin researching clinical trials.