The Monash-Gippsland Tele-trials Project addresses inequity in cancer management and outcomes for patients in rural and regional areas. Clinical trials are a fundamental part of cancer research, potentially setting future standards of care. Participation in clinical trials is recommended as the best options for many cancer patients, and international analyses clearly associate trial participation with better outcomes for patients. Cancer patients who live in MPCCC’s neighbouring region of Gippsland currently need to travel long distances to access clinical trials, and some have significantly poorer outcomes than cancer patients in metropolitan Melbourne.
Monash Health and Latrobe Regional Hospital began working together on this project in February 2019 to address these inequalities by improving access to clinical trials for patients in the Gippsland region through a tele-trials model and the establishment of Latrobe Regional Hospital as an independent trials site. The project will leverage the experience of Monash Health trials coordinators and oncologists to mentor clinical trials staff at Latrobe Regional Hospital in setting up a clinical trials facility, and recruiting and managing patients involved in oncology clinical trials.
In October 2019, Latrobe Regional Hospital opened its first oncology clinical trial, DYNAMIC Rectal, which is now recruiting patients. You can read about DYNAMIC Rectal in the following news stories from the MPCCC monthly E-newsletter.
The Monash-Gippsland Tele-trials Project will improve equity in cancer care by reducing barriers to clinical trials for patients in the Gippsland region. Additionally, collaboration and networking between rural/regional and metropolitan health service centres will be established through the project, delivering greater engagement in research activities and contributing to workforce development. This will drive improvements in evidence-based practice in clinical trials resulting from an increase in the rate of recruitment and participation of patients in clinical trials.
See here for details of the project team and steering committee. For more information about DYNAMIC Rectal, contact the Latrobe Regional Hostpial Clinical Trials Coordinator Joanne Parr on email@example.com or 03 5173 8158. For more information about the Monash Gippsland Tele-trials Project, contact Project Manager James Kinder on firstname.lastname@example.org or 03 8572 2865.
MPCCC acknowledges the support of the Victorian State Government.