Best Practices in Patient Recruitment


This Best Practice in Patient Recruitment report displays what percentages of patients are recruited from and where.

The stakes are high when it comes to clinical trials. Each day a trial goes beyond its intended deadline delays treatment for patients who would benefit from the medication and puts the sponsor organization at risk for lost revenue. Industry Standard Research’s Best Practices in Patient Recruitment report, based off of primary research with sponsors, CROs, and sites, includes an in-depth analysis of the industry’s strategies for completing a trial on-time and within budget.

One of the key findings in the report relates back to the use of specialized patient recruitment firms. According to both sponsors and CROs, engaging a specialized patient recruitment firm is a better value than adding more sites to the study. This is, in part, due to specialized recruitment firms having their own database of patients-one of the most important resources when recruiting for a clinical trial. As detailed in the chart below, the bulk of patients currently come from Existing patients at sites / in-house patient databases. While this is predicted to remain true for the next two years, respondents anticipate a smaller proportion of patients will come from in-house site databases by 2018.  

“Currently, what percentage of your patients are recruited directly via the following sources?  Your responses should add to 100%.”

ISR has collected additional insights to improve the efficacy of recruitment efforts in its Best Practices in Patient Recruitment report, including:

  • Which study characteristics drive patient recruitment success, the value of various recruitment tactics and the best sources for recruiting patients

  • Which entity (sponsor, CRO or site) has the greatest impact on recruitment success

  • Approaches to recruiting for a global trial, country selection factors and challenges encountered in recruiting for global studies

  • Performance and satisfaction levels in working with 18 different specialized patient recruitment firms and 50 CROs offering patient recruitment services

The Best Practices in Patient Recruitment is a valuable tool for anyone charged with patient recruitment. It will assist readers in knowing when and how to engage a specialized patient recruitment firm to get the best value and how to implement the best practices identified by industry peers to improve the likelihood of your trial finishing on-time and within budget. For more information about the report, please visit ISR’s report page at

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