What is risk-based monitoring?

Sponsors of clinical studies adapt many methods that are aimed at reducing the complexity of clinical trials. They also look for methods by which they can increase the efficacy of the results, while keeping the costs low. Risk-based monitoring is one of these methods.

How is risk-based monitoring understood?

One can understand risk-based monitoring in several ways. This varied understanding is because there is no one definition or application of this concept. Risk-based monitoring is a method of evaluating and preventing risk in a clinical trial. This broad definition of course, conceals more than it reveals, since risk-based monitoring can happen in a number of ways and can be applied in a number of areas concerning the clinical research.

FDA and EMA guidelines on risk-based monitoring

In 2011, the FDA, as well as the European Medicines Agency (EMA) their respective sets of draft guidance aimed at helping sponsors of clinical research get a better understanding of the regulatory requirements and obligations for the conduct clinical trials using risk-based monitoring. However, these guidelines were not specific. Moreover, they did not make any procedure or methodology or rule relating to risk-based monitoring mandatory. Since these guidelines on were more or less prescriptive and suggestive by nature; they did not address the core issue relating to risk-based monitoring, leaving the topic rather hazy.

Since this is the current state of risk-based monitoring regulations, most clinical trials sponsors have stuck to the traditional mode of risk-based monitoring. These generally include:

The importance of cloud technology to risk-based monitoring

Since all these are generally disparate from each other; risk-based monitoring has now required more and more extensive use of technology that will enable his. Risk-based monitoring has now increasingly become technology-driven and technology reliant. As new technologies such as the cloud gain more acceptance; risk-based monitoring has grown with it, since it will help keep track of the various activities at various levels and helps integrate these in real time.

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