What Are My Rights If I Participate in a Cancer Clinical Trial?

Joyce Schaffer explains patient rights in cancer clinical trials

462284491When a person enrolls in a clinical trial, they signed a consent. There are laws to protect people who enrolling the clinical trial. When they start on the clinical trial, they can stop at any time they want. Physicians will not force them to do anything.

Along with that, the myth of clinical trails being a last-ditch effort make people feel that they have to exhaust all other treatment options before they go on a clinical trial. This is not the case.

A person can enroll in a clinical trial anywhere in their cancer treatment journey depending on the type of cancer they have. You obviously need to receive the first or second or possibly even third line of treatment with your oncologist because there are first and second line standard of care evidence based treatment out there.

For more, watch Joyce Schaffer in this video.

Video Transcript

Joyce Schaffer:  When a person enrolls in a clinical trial, they signed a consent.  There are laws to protect people who enrolling the clinical trial.  When they start on the clinical trial, they can stop at any time they want.  We will not force them to do anything.  Along with that, the myths of enrolling in a clinical trial again some people feel that they have to exhaust all other treatment options before they go on a clinical trial that is so not the case.  A person can enroll in a clinical trial anywhere in their cancer treatment journey depending on the type of cancer you have. 

You obviously need to receive the first or second or possibly even third line of treatment with your oncologist because there are first and second line standard of care evidence based treatment out there.  For some cancers, we want to see you potentially after the cancer has stubborn.  It does not respond to the first line of treatment then come see us right away for the second line. 

People don’t have to again exhaust all other treatment options.  Some people feel like I have to be dying tomorrow to go on a clinical trial that is not the case and another thing is you do not need a physician referral to come here to the Virginia G. Piper Cancer Center for clinical trial enrolment, just call me.  We will get your records.  We will get you in and I can get you in within a week.  You don’t need to wait three months.  You bring the scans that you have.  You bring the records that you have.  We are not going to repeat scans or labs.  We are going to take the information you have and provide you an awesome consultation to give that wonderful quality and quantity of life that you deserve.


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