Why Clinical Trials are Important for Medical Research
Health December 19, 2018

Why Clinical Trials are Important for Medical Research

Clinical trials are conducted in order to provide improved scientific approaches for improving the healthcare and medical industry. Research based, the findings from clinical trials may provide a range of ways to improve disease screening, diagnosis, treatment, and even prevention. For instance, the data gathered from clinical trials tests medical treatments for specific patient populations or chronic conditions, and effects the decision making for the following:

  • Advancements in screening methods for certain disease or illnesses.
  • New methods for specific condition diagnosis.
  • Improved treatment methods.
  • New ways to prevent diseases.

Clinical trials select a particular group of participants or volunteers, usually made up of patients and healthy individuals, according to certain factors, such as condition type, ethnicity, gender, adn age. Clinical trials conducted within the United States are monitored by the FDA (or Food and Drug Administration) and the IRB (or Institutional Review Board), which is made up of medical professionals, scientists, physicians, statisticians, and community leaders as far as ensuring each trials maintains ethics according to the rights and safety of study participants, as well as benefits more than risks all involved. Clinical trials differ as far as purpose. While all involve gathering data on how to diagnose, screen for, treat, and prevent specific diseases or conditions, each will fall under one of the following categories:

1. Behavioral intervention clinical trials
According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, roughly 1 in 5 U.S. adults struggles with mental illness, and 1 in 25 suffer from a mental illness so severe that it significantly interferes with their quality of life. Hence, clinical trials that focus on behavioral intervention look at the effectiveness of intervention on participant human behavior linked to specific mental health conditions (i.e., depression, anxiety disorder, schizophrenia, etc.) in order to improve health and quality of life.

2. Epidemiological clinical trials
Epidemiologically based clinical trials study the impacts of diagnostic improvements on a clinical basis—for instance how new approaches to enhanced treatment and disease prevention enhancements—affect patients in specific participant groups (i.e., with certain diseases, ages, etc.). The data gathered during epidemiological clinical trials helps health care professionals better understand how certain diseases are caused, how they progress, and how they should be treated in responses to clinical situations.

3. Health care system clinical trials
Health service clinical trials aim to improve patient care as well as efficiencies when it comes to healthcare access to health care providers, services, and health care costs. While healthcare systems are committed to improving care, research must be conducted through health care system trials in order to identify negatives and improve operational process, financial resources, and staff time according to patient need. The data collected aims to improve more efficient health care processes and outcomes in the future.