Partnership marks first time clinical trials are available in underserved community at their local medical center
This month, Circuit Clinical – a Buffalo-based 43North award winner – launched a partnership with Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center to offer patients the opportunity to participate in clinical trials in a variety of service lines.
A press release noted, “This multifaceted collaboration marks a turning point in the fabric of the Niagara Region’s health care services, bringing clinical trials to Memorial’s broad and diverse patient population that otherwise may not have the opportunity to access or participate in.”
“Providing clinical excellence and teaching have always been integral components of Memorial’s mission – it’s in our DNA. We are proud to announce that we have added the third pillar to our mission, and that is to foster clinical research in partnership with Circuit Clinical,” said Joseph A. Ruffolo, NFMMC president and CEO. “With many of our physicians agreeing to participate in a number of clinical trials, that will provide new care options for our patients, particularly those challenged with chronic disease. This will also provide significant health benefits for our diverse population of patients that reside in economically challenged neighborhoods to access clinical research programs that may improve their quality of life. This strategic initiative will transform Memorial into a Center of Excellence in Clinical Research, coupled with serving as a catalyst for more job creation for our community.”
This partnership, effective immediately, strives to create a meaningful transfer from emerging developments in clinical research and the improvement in delivery of services to Niagara Region residents whose comorbidities qualify them for clinical trial participation.
The press release added, “The region’s diversity makes it a perfect location for Circuit Clinical’s trials to include a more inclusive sample set of genders, races and ages to accurately – and swiftly – produce more meaningful medical solutions directly informed by patients in need.”
Organizers said the benefits of this partnership for both partners and the community include:
√ Clinical trials play a critical role in improving the quality of life for a variety of seriously ill patients. Because diversity and the number of patients required for a successful trial have to meet a specific set of criteria, connecting the right patient with the right trial can be challenging for administrators. For example, nearly 40% of oncology clinical trials never recruit the targeted number of patients, which slows the time to get medication on the market and drives up prices. Circuit Clinical’s partnership provides NFMMC with the tools, training and infrastructure that make clinical trials possible without overextending existing resources.
√ Through the emergence of new clinical trials, additional jobs will be created – and maintained – in the Niagara Region to facilitate each study. Key individuals will include research coordinators, nurse practitioners and research assistants. Staffing numbers will continue to increase to meet the needs.
√ Circuit Clinical’s proprietary platform, TrialJourney, is a key component and success metric of this partnership. TrialJourney captures the participant experience, enabling participants to securely communicate their experiences and reviews throughout their time in a clinical trial study. These insights will serve to improve both the rollout and the communitywide adoption of these new clinical opportunities in Niagara Falls.
√ An estimated total of 22,420 Niagara Falls residents live near or under the poverty level, with a disproportionate number of minorities comprising the city’s population living in poverty. Clinical trials will help provide this population with more meaningful access to new health care options that can improve their health, moving the region one step closer to achieving health equity.
Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center is a full-service, 171-bed regional medical center with extensive inpatient and outpatient services including The Heart Center of Niagara, Niagara Wellness Connection Center, Golisano Medical Oncology Center, Wound Center of Niagara, the OB/GYN Center and UBMD Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine. The first hospital in Niagara to be designated a stroke center by the New York State Department of Health, Memorial also provides a wide range of outpatient services. To learn more, visit www.nfmmc.org.