LACOG 0420 was a cross-sectional study with 22 questions about the impact of the covid-19 pandemic on oncology clinical trials sent to 350 representatives of research programs at selected Latin American institutions that are members of LACOG. Ninety research centers participated in the study, with 70 from Brazil. Most had covid-19 cases confirmed at their institution (n = 57; 63.3%). One of the important findings was that some of the research was even interrupted, and in 48.8% it was by decision of the sponsor. “The delay in recruitment as a consequence of interruption is undoubtedly a negative effect. It is difficult to adequately value the specific impact of this delay,” comments Carlos Barrios, oncologist at Grupo Oncoclínicas-Porto Alegre and director of LACOG.
For surgeon Jorge Alexandre Canedo, researcher and executive manager of the Oncoclínicas Group survey, although regulatory agencies and sponsors have provided comprehensive guidelines and communications, research centers have had to consider specific recommendations to follow in their work.
The LACOG survey also revealed that in 27.7% of the institutions there was a change in the screening processes, with the prioritization of patients with the greatest potential benefit from therapies. According to Igor Lemos Duarte, oncologist at the Centro Paraibano de Oncologia-João Pessoa, part of the Oncoclínicas Group, one of the effects is a “selection bias that does not accurately translate the population distribution”.
Access our website and read the full article with all the details of this study.