At Clinical Accelerator we conduct many of our trials in Central and Eastern Europe, and it’s important to us that we monitor the latest data coming for our countries of operation. We’re pleased to see that, based on recent statistics, Poland is keeping up with some of the biggest players in the world of clinical trials.
While Poland cannot currently equal, in terms of numbers, the clinical trials conducted in Germany, France or United Kingdom, it has a thriving and growing clinical trials industry, which continues to attract investments from many sponsors worldwide.
Data from ClinicalTrials.gov shows that there are currently 3782 studies registered in Poland (1). This is an eight-fold increase on 2009 numbers when only 469 trials were registered (2).
What is attracting sponsors to conduct trials in Poland?
There are a number of factors that make Poland an attractive location to undertake clinical trials (2), including:
- A large population of prospective patients
- Effective patient recruitment and retention
- High quality of data and adherence to Good Clinical Practice.
Estimates from October 2010, show that the clinical trials industry in Poland is worth at least 860 millions PLN (3).
The influence of clinical research on Polish society
The clinical research industry influences Polish society in many ways. It brings innovative healthcare to Poland, allowing patients to learn more about their diseases and gain access to the latest treatments and therapies. Participation in clinical studies enables medical personnel to improve their skills, broaden their knowledge and keep up-to-date with the latest technologies and discoveries.
The dynamic development of a clinical trials industry in Poland has stimulated the process of administrative and legal change in the country, furthering the changes which began with Poland’s admission to the EU. Hopefully, the up coming European Union regulations on clinical trials will accelerate development in Poland’s administrative procedures, allowing for higher quality international trials. This is a chance for Poland to become an even more important center of studies in Central & Eastern Europe (CEE) region.
Poland leads the way in clinical trials across Central & Eastern Europe
According to a 2010 analysis by Pricewaterhouse Coopers and Infarma.pl, Poland is the leading CEE country in conducting clinical trails (3). Not only is it the country in which phase III studies are most likely to be registered, but also phase IV and even phase I and II trials. Furthermore, it is predicted that the number of phase I and II clinical trials performed in Poland will increase over the coming years.
Poland already benefits from dedicated clinical trials centers with experienced personnel, which are considered to be essential for clinical trials in the early phases of study. It is therefore unsurprising that data from the Office for Registration of Medicinal Product, Medical Devices and Biocidal Products shows an increase in the number of early phases trials registered in Poland (3).
Patient recruitment in Poland
As previously mentioned, clinical trials conducted in Poland profit from high rates of patient recruitment (3). Some of the factors associated with the healthcare system in Poland which contribute to these excellent enrollment rates:
- Detailed diagnostic and medical examination (with costs are covered by study budget) are provided for all patients.
- Clinical trials provide access to life or health saving therapies free of charge, providing a strong motivation for patients to participate in trials.
- Clinical trials provide an opportunity for patients to gain access to innovative otherwise unavailable treatments.
- Medical personnel are highly qualified, with excellent clinical trials experience
- The rates of compliance to study procedures are equal to, if not higher than, those found in Western Europe or USA (3).
Poland continues to play an important role in the clinical trials industry in CEE. The country’s administrative experience and membership in the EU unifies and simplifies procedures of registering and conducting trials. Whilst the swift recruitment of appropriate patient populations and high quality data output provide an attractive enticement to sponsors.