WHY PARTICIPATE IN A Research Study?
Did you know?
When HIV was discovered in the early 1980's no treatment was available. All current treatment options and guidelines are the result of thousands of people with HIV volunteering and participating in clinical trials. However, there is still a lot of work to do! By signing up to be part of a clinical trial, you can help improve HIV treatment for the future.
What is a clinical trial?
A clinical trial is a well-planned research study carried out by doctors, nurses and other study staff members. Different studies will have different purposes, last different lengths of time, have different criteria for qualifying, and involve different tasks for participants. Some trials may involve taking an additional medicine while others could only involve simple blood or saliva samples. It's up to you to decide if any particular study is something you are interested in or not. If you are interested in participating in a study but concerned about what is involved, a study nurse or doctor will explain all the details, time requirements, and safety precautions to you before signing up. Even once you are enrolled in a study, you will be in close contact with the study nurses and doctors, study staff, and your physician- all of whom will gladly answer any questions and address any concerns you may have along the way. You are free to leave a study at any time and it will not affect the care you receive from your doctor.
What about safety?
Federal, state and local government have strict rules researchers must follow to protect people taking part in clinical trials. These rules require each institution to have an independent Institutional Review Board (IRB). The IRB assures that the safety and rights of participants are protected and that studies are well planned. All research studies have to be approved by the IRB. Also, patients are monitored very closely throughout the study by the doctors and nurses to check for any side effects.
What about cost?
Most studies will pay for all study related costs however you or your insurance will usually need to pay for any costs that are part of your routine care. In addition, you will be reimbursed for your travel expenses and you may get paid if a study requires a lot of your time or special tests.