ICON, the international contract research organisation (CRO) based in Dublin, Ireland, has entered into a technology partnership agreement with PHT, a US-based company that supplies hand-held electronic devices for use in clinical trials.

The link-up is predicated on increasing demand for integrated technologies to capture Patient Reported Outcomes (PRO) data during clinical development. “As more trials are collecting PRO data for primary or secondary endpoints”, explained Kris Gustafson, senior vice-president, Interactive Technologies and Lifecycle Sciences Group at ICON Clinical Research, “clients are requesting an integrated solution to manage all aspects of a clinical trial including ePRO on a handheld device.”

Under the agreement, ICON clients will have access to PHT’s LogPad electronic patient diary solution and its mobile site-based data capture product, the SitePad Tablet. According to PHT, these devices “deliver the voice of the patient, in 80 languages, from homes and sites in 60 countries around the world”.

In return, PHT’s customers can tap into the ICON Lifecycle Group’s significant experience in the design and implementation of PRO research as well as ICON’s Interactive Technologies electronic Patient Reported Outcomes (ePRO) using the ICOPhone system, which combines Interactive Voice Response (IVR) and Interactive Web Response (IWR) technologies, the companies noted.

Clients will also be able to “integrate data from ICON’s IVR/IWR system with PHT’s handheld solutions in real time in order to create a more efficient flow of information through one system”, the partners added.

ICON and PHT have already secured three new clinical trials through their alliance. As well as collaborating on new business opportunities, the companies’ global business development and marketing teams are working together to address customers’ complete PRO requirements.