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Planning & Feasibility

NCATS Initiatives

Innovation for Multi-site Studies: Participant Recruitment

CTSA Accrual to Clinical Trials (CTSA ACT)

Initiative to develop a nationwide network of sites using data from the Electronic Health Record (EHR) to identify potential trial participants meeting entry criteria.

  • Technology platform has two major components:
    • Informatics for Integrating Biology and the Bedside (i2b2), a software package that converts raw records into de-identified and searchable participant information stored in a central database.
    • Shared Health Research Informatics Network (SHRINE), a search engine for i2b2. With appropriate agreements in place, an ACT investigator can use SHRINE to search de-identified records using a customized set of participant criteria. SHRINE queries all network institutions and provides an approximate number of participants at each site who meet the criteria.
CTSA Network Recruitment Innovation Centers (RICs)

Initiative to build national recruitment capacity using data from the Electronic Health Record (EHR) to find potential trial participants who meet entry criteria.

  • To improve research participant recruitment in the planning phase of clinical trials by rapidly providing investigators with estimates of the availability of candidate participants meeting the study’s entry criteria. Such estimates will be based on de-identified, aggregate data derived from the electronic health record (EHR) at individual sites and across the CTSA consortium.
  • In the implementation phase of a clinical trial, the RICs will support investigators through innovative strategies for enrolling research participants in a timely manner.

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