Medical Research Network (MRN), the UK-based provider of home-healthcare and site-support services for clinical trials, is launching a new patient-recruitment tool claimed to offer “unrivalled planning” in the run-up to study starts.

Underpinning the MRN-RAPID programme is social-media analysis software developed by PA Consulting under an “exclusive” collaboration with MRN.

According to Dr Graham Wylie, chief executive officer of Medical Research Network, MRN–RAPID can access “the 500 million or so social media interactions made every day”, providing a vast database of activity for use in targeting relevant patients and the individuals they interact with in the digital environment.

“It’s an unrivalled tool for the efficient planning of optimal patient recruitment within healthcare programmes,” Wylie said.

New levels of information

The system’s “powerful” interface gives users access to new levels of information on potential trial participants, MRN explained – for example, mapping the geographical distribution of specific patient populations by scanning social-media activity including Twitter, Facebook and blogs.

MRN-RAPID can also map the digital activity of patients to identify the optimum channels for reaching them, be it through key influencers, Twitter, Google adwords, banner adverts or news releases.

The programme has the capacity to analyse the competitive landscape for clinical trials and active recruiting sites, minimising competition for patients and maximising patient access.

Focused site selection

The analytics employed in MRN–RAPID enable focused site selection and resourcing into appropriate regions, as well as driving patients to referral websites through campaigns that engage key influencers and Twitter followers, MRN noted.

Targeted advertising may be pursued via Google and other appropriate websites, it added.

 “By employing MRN–RAPID we identify where the patients are, who they listen to and what they think about trials,” Wylie commented.

MRN will officially launch MRN-RAPID at the Drug Information Association Annual Meeting in Boston, US later this month.