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Resumed clinical trials will grow gradually with COVID-19 vaccine rollout: GlobalData

As of February 22, 2021, the number of resumed trials has increased to 955

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With the expected decrease in monthly COVID-19 cases due to increasing vaccinations in countries such as the US and the UK, GlobalData expects clinical trials to resume more quickly in these countries.

Priya Nair, Analyst, Trials Intelligence Analyst at GlobalData, comments, “Since early March 2020, more than 500 companies have publicly announced disruptions to their planned and ongoing clinical trials due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, with the global rollout of three main COVID-19 vaccines from Pfizer, Oxford/AstraZeneca, and Moderna, and the latest approval for Johnson & Johnson, active cases of COVID-19 worldwide are decreasing steadily and this has led to a very slight, steady increase in clinical trial activity.”

As of February 22, 2021, the number of resumed trials has increased to 955. Out of these trials, 68.3 per cent are currently recruiting participants, 14.0 per cent have completed recruitment but are still ongoing, and 0.4 per cent of trials have yet to start recruiting subjects. The US has the highest number of resumed trials at 70.2 per cent, followed by the UK at 9.3 per cent, Spain at 7.0 per cent, France at 6.9 per cent, and Germany at 6.5 per cent.

Nair continues, “Initially, the general trend showed a gradual increase in the overall percentage of trials for each trial status, the biggest of which has been seen in ongoing, recruiting trials and ongoing, not recruiting trials. However, between January 25 and February 22, ongoing, recruiting trials decreased further from 71.9 per cent to 68.3 per cent, and completed trials increased from 12.8 per cent to 14.0 per cent.”

The majority of trial disruptions can be attributed to patient safety measures, strict lockdown requirements, social distancing procedures, and the high demand for medical professionals to treat COVID-19 patients. Many companies have delayed the initiation of planned trials or withdrawn them completely, and others have suspended enrollment in their ongoing trials or terminated the trials altogether.

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