Get Your Compliance Ducks in a Row By Evaluating IIT Research Grants for FMV

Natalie DeMasi, clinical development and medical affairs researcher
By Natalie DeMasi,
Research Analyst

Like any medical affairs subfunction, compliance is a major concern for investigator initiated trial (IIT) teams.  Companies have no say in an IIT’s protocol, patient recruitment practices or final publication, so teams need to get all their compliance ducks in a row before giving out an IIT research grant.  One of the most crucial compliance concerns is that the IIT’s proposed budget is fair-market value (FMV). Continue reading


Top 3 Criteria for Selecting Investigator Initiated Trials to Fund: Strategy Alignment, Scientific Merit and Strong Investigator Credentials

Natalie DeMasi, clinical development and medical affairs researcher
By Natalie DeMasi,
Research Analyst

There are many different names for investigator sponsored trials (ISTs), such as investigator initiated trials (IITs), investigator sponsored studies (ISS), investigator initiated research (IIR) and a number of other variants of those titles that you can think of.  IITs – or whatever sobriquet you prefer – vary in budget, patient population, phase and research goals even more than they vary in name.  But one thing does not change about investigator sponsored trials: the need to carefully select which trials are worth funding and which ones are not. Continue reading


Investigator Sponsored Trials: Structuring Evaluation and Approval Committees

Natalie DeMasi, clinical development and medical affairs researcher
By Natalie DeMasi,
Research Analyst

There are many key elements to running a successful investigator sponsored trials (ISTs) program, such as:

  • Evaluating IST proposals efficiently
  • Only approving ISTs that have high scientific merit and align with corporate research objectives
  • Maintaining compliance with fair market value (FMV) and milestone payments

The investigator sponsored trials evaluation committee is at the heart of many of these processes.  A company’s IST team runs the program, but the IST committee is responsible for evaluating the submissions. Continue reading



Three Steps for Calculating FMV Investigator Compensation

Natalie DeMasi, FMV investigator compensation researcher
By Natalie DeMasi,
Research Analyst

In recent years, regulatory policies dictate that life sciences companies must pay physicians fair-market value (FMV) payments.  But, regulatory guidelines offer no rule book for how to calculate FMV.  This situation — however dire it may seem — actually offers companies a tabula rasa for establishing the best methods for FMV calculations.  While pharma continues to build its own guidelines for FMV, there are three broad steps for determining FMV investigator compensation: Continue reading


Mitigating the Risks of CER Clinical Trials

Natalie DeMasi, clinical trial and comparative effectiveness researcher
By Natalie DeMasi,
Research Analyst

One of the best ways to prove a product’s worth is to quash a competing product in comparative effectiveness research (CER) clinical trials.  Conversely, one of the best ways to harm a product’s market success is to be crushed in a comparator trial.  Of course, most CER clinical trials are not this definitive, but there are always risks of unexpected negative revelations.  Despite this, many life sciences companies look to comparative effectiveness findings to aid market access and commercialization efforts. Continue reading



IIT Submissions Moving Online: Looking for a Better Process

As the old saying goes, “Good help is hard to find.” Well, sometimes the best option is to make it easier for the help to find you. Our research has shown that Investigator-Initiated Trial proposals are on the rise over the last three years — averaging 173.3 per company in 2011, up 23 percent from 141.2 in 2009. In talking with IIT executives, many of them experienced noticeable increases in IIT proposals when their online submission portals were up and running. Continue reading


Four Guideposts to Improve Investigator-Initiated Trials Payment Processes for FMV Compliance


By David Richardson,
Research Team Leader

The Office of the Inspector General at Health and Human Services (OIG) has been highly focused recently on tracking and publicizing pharmaceutical companies’ payments to thought leader physicians and clinical investigators. A number of companies have found themselves under investigation, and some have had to enter into Corporate Integrity Agreements to ensure their practices are up to the scrutiny.

Teams that run investigator-initiated trials (IITs) can play a major part in avoiding (or passing) OIG scrutiny by focusing on improvements in three major areas: Continue reading


Dedicated Resources for Investigator Initiated Trial Management are Critical


By Ryan McGuire,
Senior Research Analyst

Pharmaceutical companies are growing more strategic in their investigator initiated trial (IIT) selection. As Research and Development organizations have sharpened their focus on mission-critical pre-approval clinical development studies, external investigators have become a critical channel to answer post-marketing product profile questions. But even as clinical resources concentrate on earlier phase work, IIT proposals do not organize, review, approve and manage themselves. Continue reading