Launch of a new tool for funders: Living Roadmap will support stronger coordination of clinical trial responses to epidemics and pandemics
The GloPID-R Funders Living Roadmap for Clinical Trial Coordination is now publicly available on the GloPID-R website. Setting out clear goals, principles and recommendations, it represents a valuable tool for funders and other stakeholders. This Living Roadmap will contribute to improving global capacity to deliver coordinated, effective and equitable clinical trials in response to epidemics and pandemics.
The 15-month process to produce the Roadmap was spearheaded by the GloPID-R Clinical Trial Networks & Funders and Data Sharing Working Groups supported by the GloPID-R Research and Policy Team. They worked closely with senior representatives of international clinical trial networks and observers, including CEPI and WHO. “As GloPID-R Chair, I am proud of the tremendous effort made by our working groups to produce this important tool for research funders,” said Charu Kaushic. “It will surely strengthen our capacity for a globally coordinated clinical trial response to outbreaks with epidemic and pandemic potential.”
A globally consultative and iterative approach was applied to develop the Roadmap. “Researchers and funders from around the world shared their experiences of coordinating clinical trials during outbreaks,” said Isabel Foster, GloPID-R Research & Policy Officer. “The recommendations in the Roadmap draw on decades of lessons learnt.”
Calling for change across the clinical trial ecosystem
The Living Roadmap represents a clear response to calls for greater coordination and change across the clinical trial ecosystem. It is in direct support of initiatives such as the 100 Days Mission, the G7 Therapeutics and Vaccines Clinical Trials Charter, and the World Health Assembly (WHA) 75.8 Resolution on strengthening clinical trials.
“WHA’s 2022 Resolution on clinical trials encourages research funding agencies to prioritise and fund clinical trials that are well-designed and well-implemented, conducted in diverse settings and that include all major population groups the intervention is intended to benefit. Any progress by research funders in this area is very much welcomed in order for investments to lead to more robust and actionable evidence,” said John Reeder, Chief Scientist a.i. and Director of TDR (Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases) and Director of the Department of Research for Health at the WHO in Geneva.
Structure and implementation
The Roadmap defines 3 goals supported by 11 principles for funders to endorse, and a set of recommendations to achieve these principles. While not all funders will be able to implement all of the recommended actions, it is expected that they should be able to act on some of them.
“We finally have a Funders Living Roadmap for Clinical Trial Coordination. Now we need to walk that road in order to achieve the fullest potential that this effort could offer us. Therefore, all hands to the plough!” commented Dr John Amuasi (ALERRT, KNUST Department of Global Health, Ghana), who co-chairs the GloPID-R Clinical Trial Networks & Funders Working Group.
The Roadmap will contribute to ensuring that clinical trials are conducted equitably to benefit populations globally. “In addition to providing a valuable resource to improve the coordination of clinical trials, it helps us build and strengthen capacity, particularly in low- and middle- income countries,” said Professor Charles Wiysonge (South African Medical Research Council)
To date, the following listed organisations endorse the Goals and Principles of the GloPID-R Living Roadmap for Clinical Trial Coordination:
- ANRS | Emerging Infectious Diseases Agency, France
- Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
- Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)
- ESSENCE on Health Research
- German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF)
- Japan Agency for Medical Research and Development (AMED)
- National Institute of Health Carlos III (ISCIII)
- Pasteur Network
- Sao Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP)
- South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC)
- UK Department of Health & Social Care (UK DHSC)
The GloPID-R Research & Policy Team is looking forward to receiving more endorsements from GloPID-R members and observers.