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Christian Smitt-Plank

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    MA24 - Initiatives to Improve Health in Lung Cancer Patients (ID 354)

    • Event: WCLC 2019
    • Type: Mini Oral Session
    • Track: Advocacy
    • Presentations: 1
    • Now Available
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      MA24.01 - Challenges in Lung Cancer Clinical Trials: A European Perspective  (Now Available) (ID 1873)

      14:30 - 16:00  |  Author(s): Christian Smitt-Plank

      • Abstract
      • Presentation
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      Lung Cancer Europe (LuCE) is the voice of people impacted by lung cancer at the European level. LuCE aims to increase knowledge of lung cancer, and provide a platform to raise awareness regarding disparities in detection, diagnosis, treatment and care across Europe. This study was undertaken to gain a better insight in to the clinical trial experience from a patient perspective, and improve our understanding of patients’ awareness and attitudes towards clinical trials.


      Surveys and qualitative interview questions were designed based on a review of relevant literature and policy sources. Online surveys were constructed and shared with lung cancer advocates (n=13; covering 12 different countries) and patients with lung cancer (n=262; covering 15 European countries). Qualitative interviews were also undertaken with 15 individuals, covering the medical community, representatives from patient advocate organisations and the pharmaceutical industry.


      The majority of patient respondents were aged between 56-65 years of age (37%), with women accounting for 70% of total respondents. Most of those who took part resided in Poland (19.5%), Italy (18.7%), Denmark (9.9%) and Spain (9.2%). A number of concerning figures emerged from the data. Overall, 50% did not fully understand what a clinical trial was, and 22% of respondents had never heard of clinical trials. Only 11% of those surveyed had participated, or were actively participating in a lung cancer clinical trial. Over 50% of these respondents stated that their trial experience was positive. The Internet was the primary source used by patients to find trial information (89%), however only 10% stated that they could always find the information they needed. This is critical, as the more information patients obtained, the more willing they were to participate in clinical trials. Overall 80% wanted to find out more about clinical trials, and 75% believed that it would be beneficial for patients to work together with researchers in the clinical trial development process. Key areas identified by this research included difficulties in cross-border access, language barriers, lack of accurate accessible information, lack of awareness by patients and clinicians, and disparities in access across Europe.


      A number of barriers were identified in accessing lung cancer clinical trials across Europe and within individual countries. These obstacles are multifaceted and exist at a protocol, clinical and patient level. The lung cancer community must work together to overcome these barriers and ensure access to clinical trials for all people impacted by lung cancer.

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