As part of our commitment to provide high-quality, cutting-edge care to our cancer patients, Yuma Regional Medical Center Cancer Center participates in several clinical trials.
What are clinical trials?
Clinical trials are research studies that explore whether a medical strategy, treatment or device is safe and effective for humans. These studies may also help researchers learn which medical approaches work best for certain illnesses or groups of people. Clinical trials are sponsored by government agencies such as the National Institute of Health (NIH) as well as by pharmaceutical companies, health care centers and organizations that develop medical devices or equipment. Many patients have benefitted from groundbreaking scientific advances that would not have been possible without the assistance of the patients before them who were willing to participate in important research.
Why should I consider participating in a clinical trial?
First of all, it is important to note that clinical trials are one of the final stages of a long and careful research process. A great deal of research has already been conducted on the medication or medical device before it reaches the clinical trial phase.
Taking part in a clinical trial can have many benefits. For example, you may gain access to an effective new treatment before it becomes available to the general public. Even if you don’t directly benefit from the results of the trial, you will have the satisfaction of knowing that the information gathered during the study can help others and add to scientific knowledge. Many people volunteer for a clinical trial because they want to help others.
Despite the promise offered by clinical trials, less than five percent of adults with cancer enroll in them. This low level of participation slows progress in the development of new, more effective treatments. In direct contrast, more than 60 percent of children with cancer receive treatment through a clinical trial. Approximately three-quarters of children with cancer survive long-term compared with only half of adults. The increased survival rate for children can be directly linked to the enrollment of patients in cancer clinical trials over many years whose experience lead to better treatments and better outcomes.
Participating in a clinical trial is always voluntary, and you may stop your participation for any personal or medical reason at any time. Before you begin participating in a clinical trial, the research team will explain the entire process in detail, including any potential risks and benefits.
The decision to participate in a clinical trial is an important one, and we’re sure you will have many questions. For more information, visit the Clinical Trials section on our website or call 928-336-3366.