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Clinical Trials 101

Questions To Ask Before Agreeing To Join A Clinical Trial

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Once you have identified a trial that could work for you, you can interview the trial coordinator, doctor, research scientist, nurse, or other member of the research team.

  • The interview provides a great opportunity to ask questions including:
    • The potential benefits of the trial 
    • The risks 
    • Participant protections 
    • Costs you have to bear. (If you have health insurance, thanks to the Affordable Care Act (also referred to as "Obamacare"), the costs have to be paid for by your health insurance. Patient costs of clinical trials are also covered by Medicare.)
  • Knowing the right questions to ask, and understanding the responses, can help ensure that you choose the trial that may be most beneficial. 
    • Our Clinical Trial Interview chart contains a list of suggested questions to ask about a clinical trial in which you're interested. The questions have been divided into four separate categories.
    • You can prioritize the questions in their order of importance to you.  Just type a number next to each question which indicates your order of priority. Then click "Renumber " at the end and the questions will automatically be reordered to your preference. (If the order still doesn't fit your needs after clicking on "Renumber," you can keep redoing the chart until you're satisfied.)
    • Feel free to print the questions and take them with you to interviews about the trial.
    • You should be able to find the answers to most questions from the doctor who oversees the trial, the Informed Consent and/or the trial protocol. If the questions relate to how a trial will affect your daily life, speak with one of the trial's nurses.
    • Click here for your copy of The Clinical Trial Interview: A List Of Suggested Questions.

NOTE: Be sure all your questions are answered to your satisfaction before joining any clinical trial.

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