Signing up for a clinical trial

What are the advantages of participating in a clinical trial?

The main advantage of participating in a clinical trial is that it may be the only way to get the latest treatment with therapies that are usually not available to the general public for many years. Regardless of the treatment, patients on clinical trials generally do better than those who are not on a trial which may be due to the rigorous follow-up and monitoring that occurs on the trial. Another advantage is that more people will be looking after you; including doctors and the trial coordinator.

New interventions for most diseases and conditions - including cancer, heart disease, high blood pressure and asthma - have been developed through clinical research. So participating in a trial is not only good for you, it is good for all Australians.

Can I take part in a trial?

To assess your eligibility to participate in our clinical trials we collect information about your overall health and some details specific to your cancer such as:

  • Age and gender
  • Results of medical tests
  • Medicines that you are taking
  • Other health problems
  • Cancer type and stage
  • Other treatments you may have had
  • How long it has been since you were last treated

How do I sign up?

If your doctor offers you a place in a clinical trial, the first step is the informed consent process. The doctor or research nurse will review the informed consent form in detail with you which explains the purpose and plan of the clinical trial as well as the trial risks and benefits. When you sign the informed consent form you are giving your agreement to participate in the clinical trial. 

Can I quit if I don't like it?

All patients in clinical trials are volunteers. You can choose to quit a clinical trial at any time, but talk to your doctor first. Your doctor can tell you how quitting the trial might affect your health and if there are other treatment options. Your relationship with your health care providers will not be changed by your decision to quit the trial.