International Clinical Trials Day (ICTD)

Today we are celebrating International Clinical Trials Day!
Good treatment requires research. This has become particularly clear this spring, as we battle the global Covid-19 outbreak without access to approved medications or vaccines. Each year, 20 May is recognised as International Clinical Trials Day to raise awareness of and promote knowledge about clinical trials, and in this blog you can read more about clinical trials during pandemic times.

What is it we want to highlight?
The objective of ICTD is to raise awareness of and promote knowledge about the importance of clinical trials. We want to show the importance of research for the development of good treatment, by informing the general public (including patients and relatives), hospital staff and researchers about the activity that is taking place. The goal is to increase the number of clinical trials, include more patients in trials and further develop the partnership with industry.

The background to ICTD
International Clinical Trials Day (ICTD) is celebrated on 20 May each year. This is believed to be the date when a British naval officer, James Lind, carried out what is thought to be the first prospective, controlled trial, to find a possible treatment for scurvy. At the time, this disease was a major problem that caused terrible suffering and many fatalities among crews on long sea voyages. This was a major challenge for both the merchant fleet, which often sailed long transport routes, and the Navy, where sailors remained on board for long periods.

For ICTD 2020, the focus in Norway will be research into treatment for Covid-19
In the light of the events of this winter and spring, this year’s national celebration will be toned down, as the health services will no doubt be focused elsewhere – that is, on limiting and treating the coronavirus pandemic. What we want to highlight are the researchers who in a short time have managed to put together a research project on Covid-19, and all the support functions that have helped to get this started. Under normal circumstances, it would take up to a year (or longer) to take an idea to start-up, so this year’s campaign will highlight what we can achieve, both nationally and internationally, when it really matters.

ICTD 2020 – local focus
Even though at a national level we at NorCRIN want to focus on Covid-19, that does not mean that you have to do the same locally. Those of you who are creating something locally are completely free to choose your own topics and measures for highlighting clinical research.

#Spøromkliniskestudier (#Askaboutclinicaltrials)
This hashtag can be used if you post something on social media. It makes it easier to search for text, images etc.

How can this day be marked?
Feel free to get researchers, user representatives, patient organisations etc. involved in the commemoration. After all, they have first-hand experience of illness and health, and can see the benefit of clinical trials. Or you could write a blog post, mention the day in a newsletter, intranet post or morning meeting, or on Facebook, LinkedIn, local media, local radio – there are plenty of options. A great brochure has been produced that can be used for inspiration. You can download it here.

Information about this year’s events:

St. Olav’s Hospital:
Link to webinar

OUS:
Link to newsletter
Link to LinkedIn

Ahus:
Link to news item
Search on Facebook: Forskningspoliklinikk Ahus

Additional practical tips
For more advice and tips on how to arrange events for the day, see here.