“Clients can use the text message feature to send reminders to patients about both the medications and upcoming visits,” adds Kim Kundert, VP of clinical operations at Virtrial. The platform also allows CROs to send email links comprising the educational material about the disease under study, and in turn, helps patients get a better understanding of their medical condition. Furthermore, the Virtrial app provides pharmaceutical companies and CROs with analytical reports that enable them to make preemptive decisions with regard to patient activity. As a result, CROs and pharmaceutical companies are not merely communicating with clinical research coordinators (CRC) and principal investigators (PI), but are also receiving real-time data on patient compliance and protocol adherence.
A worldwide reach enhances the quality and effectiveness of the virtual visits that Virtrial provides through video calls capable of accommodating up to four people at a time.
“However, our aim is to replace only 25-50 percent of clinic visits with virtual visits, as it is still crucial for patients to meet physicians, especially for the first time when they discuss the trial details and get dispensed study medication,” points Hanley. During the primary clinic visit, patients also undergo eligibility checks and physical examinations and get their medical records reviewed. Post these processes, the CRCs help patients download the Virtrial app that is compatible with all kinds of phones, iPad, or computer.
Virtrial is currently working on adding an API to its app in order to support wearable devices like Apple watches, Fitbit bands, and ActiGraph solutions. The ability of these devices to track patients’ sleep patterns, heart rates, and other activities can simplify the task of data collection for CROs. In weeks to come, Virtrial has meetings with prospective pharmaceutical clients and a conference in Florida. “As we build up our clientele, we plan to add staff to help train research sites, maintain the app, and manage contracts,” concludes Kim.