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Site Solutions Summit: Reflections & Visions

by Steve Swanson

Having recently returned from this year’s Site Solutions Summit, it seems appropriate to share some reflections. Being on the Global Impact Partners Advisory Board for the Society for Clinical Research Sites (SCRS) provides a unique view into the planning and purpose of the summit. I can say unequivocally that this year’s summit was a resounding success. A phrase like “resounding success” can be overused. However, in this case I think not. Let me share with you why I think it is appropriate.

In eight short years, the summit has grown from a concept to a dynamic organization. There were approximately 600 attendees at this year’s event. Ten sponsor organizations and six CROs participated as well. It wasn’t that many years ago when only one sponsor attended. The SCRS has grown as well, attaining membership of 1,300 this year.

So what makes these numbers special, you might ask? What’s particularly special and interesting is the rapid growth in site membership and participation, coupled with the additional sponsors and CROs. Let me suggest it’s an indication that the rapidly changing regulatory landscape, trial metrics, protocol trends, the need for better data, improved access to potential subjects, and return-on-investment requirements are coming together with sufficient force to require sites and study teams to push through the current state of the industry and achieve tangible improvements.

The summit and SCRS are providing the bridge necessary to forge bilateral dialogue on issues, opportunities, and perspectives. As a result, I am optimistic that these formats can drive tangible change. Key concepts from this summit included business practices, economics and patient perspectives. In addition, the summit hosts relevant speakers directly addressing today’s issues, with supporting data that can be used in policy and decision-making.

By now you have concluded that I’m a fan – and I am. If you’re an active clinical research site and you’re searching for an organization or forum that speaks on behalf of sites, then you may want to check out either SCRS membership or participation at next year’s summit. If you’re a sponsor organization looking for more interaction with sites that desire to be the best they can be, perhaps involvement in the summit will be relevant to you.

As for us, we’re in!

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