Mobile specimen collection in clinical trials is the collection of biological specimens, like blood and urine, at or near a patient’s location in order to improve convenience and reduce patient burden. In addition to investigator sites, specimen collection may occur at a patient’s home, a patient’s place of business, a vacation destination, purpose-built alternative locations like patient service centers, special locations set up for a specific study, and retail locations.
To make select visits more convenient, and more recently to support decentralized clinical trials, we have provided or supported mobile collection services for dozens of studies via the use of patient service centers, home phlebotomy, home nursing, and special locations.
In the United States and Canada, we partner with home phlebotomy companies, which provide a much lower cost alternative to specimen collection via home nursing companies. While phlebotomists cannot perform the same procedures as nurses, they can collect specimens and basic biometrics like height, weight, blood pressure and EKG.
In addition to specimen collection and basic biometrics, depending upon the jurisdiction, home nurses may be able to provide patient consenting, injections of investigational products, patient evaluations and physician-guided physical examinations. The following is a partial list of locations available for home collection: United States, Canada, Israel, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, South Korea, Thailand, Malaysia and India, and countries within Western Europe, Central America, and South America.
Home nursing companies continually update the locations in which they offer services. Home specimen collection for patients located in remote areas of a country may require additional fees for travel expenses and time; or in some cases, home collection services may not be available.
In certain instances, sponsors set up locations, staffed by phlebotomists or nurses, to collect specimens during screening. In other cases, sponsors set up special locations to support certain patient visits, including a place of business, where phlebotomists or nurses may be deployed.