Blog 4 minute read

eCOA/ePRO: Why patients deserve even more progress

Patients in clinical trials deserve a modern eCOA/ePRO solution for several reasons, especially when it comes to mobile applications. The use of technology in clinical trials has become increasingly important to ensure patient engagement and meet their expectations.

eCOA/ePRO Flexibility

Firstly, mobile applications provide patients with the flexibility to participate in clinical trials from anywhere, at any time. With the rise of telemedicine and remote monitoring, patients expect the same level of convenience and accessibility when it comes to participating in clinical trials. A modern eCOA/ePRO solution that utilizes mobile technology can enhance patient engagement by allowing them to easily input their data and interact with the trial team.

Increased Satisfaction

Furthermore, mobile applications can also improve patient satisfaction by making the process of participating in a clinical trial less burdensome. Traditional eCOA/ePRO solutions can be cumbersome and time-consuming, leading to low patient engagement. A mobile application can simplify the process, allowing patients to input their data in real time, reducing the risk of errors, and making the process more convenient for patients.

Enhanced Communication

Additionally, mobile applications can enhance patient communication and provide real-time updates on trial progress. This can help to increase patient trust and satisfaction, leading to higher patient retention rates. Patients can receive reminders and notifications about important events, such as appointments and medication doses, and can easily communicate with the trial team for any questions or concerns.

A Personalized Experience

Moreover, modern eCOA/ePRO solutions can also help to meet patient expectations by providing a more personalized experience. Patients can access their data and track their progress, which can help to increase their motivation and engagement in the trial. With a mobile application, patients can also receive tailored messages and updates, helping to build a sense of community and support among participants.

An Industry Veteran Point of View

If you’re like me and you’ve worked in the clinical trials industry for a long time, you know we’ve come a long way from the days of fully paper-based studies. The shift from reporting on paper to electronic reporting has been happening for years; however, the transition hasn’t always been elegant (cue the days of Palm Pilots and tele-cradles).

More recently, the pandemic has played a role in accelerating the shift to eCOA/ePRO. Today, 68% of studies that collect patient-reported outcomes use electronic solutions. That percentage is expected to reach 84% over the next two years.[1]

Yet despite this progress, many of the tools used for eCOA/ePRO are stuck in the past. They’re more like digitized paperwork than engaging digital experiences. Fortunately, I see two forces converging to transform the tools the industry relies on radically.

For better engagement, we need better eCOA/ePRO tools

The first force is growing momentum about the importance of patient engagement. Better engagement increases retention improves the quality of data captured, and ultimately helps improve patient health outcomes. For better engagement, we need better eCOA/ePRO tools.

The second force is the continued ubiquity of smartphones. Mobile devices have become indispensable in supporting how we shop, bank, travel, and stay connected with each other. It’s time for smartphones to play an equally seamless and invaluable role in clinical trials.

The intersection of these forces represents an immense opportunity to unleash the full potential of engaging digital experiences. To keep a clinical trial at the patient’s fingertips – making it far easier to handle everything from e-consent to virtual visits and safety monitoring. To make the trial more transparent for patients, they can feel energized about actively contributing to the study.

Creating a Better Experience

But these kinds of digital experiences don’t just “happen”; they must be well designed. Tools need to be designed so that patients want to use them. These tools must make it easier to participate in a trial – for example, by reducing the need for in-person visits, increasing the ease of instrument completion, and streamlining ongoing communications and monitoring.

A modern eCOA/ePRO platform can deliver the experiences that patients deserve – starting today.

Of course, patients aren’t the only trial stakeholders who deserve better experiences. Sites do, too, but more on that in my next post.

The Datacubed Difference

Don’t miss the opportunity to impact the future of clinical trials. Watch our short demo video now and discover how we’re empowering patients, increasing participant satisfaction, and revolutionizing how researchers collect data. Our innovative solution has the potential to completely transform the clinical trial landscape and make a positive impact on patient outcomes. So, don’t wait; hit the play button and see for yourself how we’re making a difference.


[1] eCOA/ePRO Benchmarking & Market Dynamics (4th Ed.)