“I am a BDS graduate . I would like to change my career in clinical Research. My parents also says don’t choose dentistry as a career option. They are more worried now. In my area , father of a a dentist died due to Covid recently. Please advice which career option is best suit for a BDS graduate. Several professors advised that Clinical Research is a relevant and high rewarding career option for BDS graduates. Is it true? How can enter into Clinical Research ? .” A BDS graduate from Mumbai called me last week.
For the last several months i am getting several calls & mail from MBBS, BDS, Pharm D , Pharmacy , Nursing ,Physiotherapy , Science graduates related to the clinical research and future scope of clinical research programs.
In 2019 ,before the outbreak of pandemic , the number of enquiry was normal like any other courses. I have done a key word search with AHREF tool to know the search volume.
- 1 What is Clinical Research ?
- 2 Clinical Research Courses
- 3 What are the Clinical Research Job Positions Available ?
- 4 Why Clinical Research is So Popular now ?
In India, 6,400 Clinical Research search in a day. Clinical Research job search 1300 in 3 days.
Clinical Research associate search 1,000 in two days.
A surprising search volume data….
I am in Clinical Research Industry for last 12 years. I have seen this kind of attention and enquiry first time in my life.
Some years ago, the picture was entirely different . In 2013 , I visited my research guide to show my marketing research proposal . The title was related to Patient Recruitment Strategies in Clinical Research. The research work was the part of my MBA marketing specialization program.. The guide laughed at me and said :
” So you are interested in Guinea Pig research ?”
That question was underlined the common perception of the people about clinical research at that time.
What is Clinical Research ?
Clinical Research is the branch of healthcare health care Science that evaluates the safety and effectiveness of medications , devices for human use. It can be used for prevention( Example Vaccine) , treatment and diagnosis .
Once safety and effectiveness are proved though clinical research, that medicinal product will be used in clinical practice . Clinical Practice is the extension of Clinical Research. Without clinical research , there in no new drug ,vaccine or device.
What is The Difference of Clinical Trial & Clinical Research ?
Clinical Trial is an experiment designed to answer the questions about potential new treatments. Clinical trials are conducted to determine whether the new drug is safe and effective. Firstly , the new potential molecule are studied in Labs. After that it administered in animals and then humans.
Clinical Trial is the part the Clinical Research . It is mostly conducted by Pharmaceutical companies with commercial interest. If the product is successful . then the companies can make profit out of it. If the product fails millions of dollars and decade long effort go in waste. If two ,three products failed continuously , then company became bankrupt. That is why only financially sound Pharmaceutical companies are entered into drug development market.
In Clinical trial, commercial interest and investigational experiments are the integral part . Clinical research are mostly driven by Academic interest- to add new information to the existing knowledge .That information can be used for clinical trial research problem later.
When Covid-19 made media headlines , the perception of clinical research has been changed drastically. Drug Development, Covid-19 Vaccine, Side effects, Clinical Trial -These all terms became very common in news media. General public were more curious about Clinical Research. All medical research communities started Covid-19 related research .
World Health Organization (WHO) also appealed and encouraged solidarity Clinical Research on Covid-19 to Global research communities . Within one year covid-19 vaccines were developed by different countries and started giving public for emergency use. Drug development and vaccine take generally 10 years after the stringent clinical trial process – Phase I , phase II , phase III & phase IV.
Phase I: In this phase generally 20 -80 healthy volunteers participate. The main purpose of this phase is to determine the safety and tolerable drug dose ranges.
Phase II : The main purpose of this phase is to evaluate the effectiveness of a drug for a particular indication . This phase conducts in large number of participants (up to 1000) to prove the therapeutic benefits of the drug .
Phase III : Primary objective this phase is for confirmation of the therapeutic benefits. Large number of participants (Up to 3000) are enrolled
Phase IV: This is the post marketing trial. Once the drug entered into market , this trial can be conducted . In this phase , the trials go beyond the drug’s safety ,efficacy and dose definition. The drug- drug interaction , dose response are also evaluated. If the drug seems harmful to general population, then the drug will be withdrawn from the market.
A new drug enters into market after long years clinical trial process that takes average 10-15 years.
However, the Covid-19 Vaccine were available for emergency use before completing all phases of detailed evaluation . Due to the pressing need , the regulatory bodies gave permission as there is no alternative is available in market to save the life of people.
Clinical Research Courses
Clinical Research is not everybody’s cup of tea. Don’t try to enter into clinical research only looking at its monetary and other professional benefits .
Ask few questions to yourself before taking the decision.
- Are you really interested in research field to learn new things on daily basis?
- Ready to work beyond the clock time to complete the task?
- Are you a graduates of Medical , Dental , Pharmacy , Nursing , Physiotherapy or Science ?
- Are you ready to move a relevant domain of Clinical Research which is applicable of your knowledge?
If the all answer is yes then your are the right person for this Industry .
Next step is to get training from the right place. Is there any right and wrong place in Clinical Research ? Yes . Sadly true. A wrong choice may negatively affect your career aspirations.
How to find a right place for Clinical Research
If you not aware anything in clinical research training institution, then please do google . You can find lot of advertisement in the form of website that offer clinical research training . Don’t get excited by seeing the high appealing website and brochure .The following check list will be helpful for finding a good training center.
- Whether the organization has its own clinical trial wing?
- How industry reputed and well known the organization? Branded organization is helpful for getting interview call?
- Whether organization selects needful Research staff from the successful Students lists?
- Whether the organization has full time experienced faculties?
- Whether the organization has any Research accreditation background?
- How about the course delivery mode? Does interactive option with faculties ?
- Whether the program has any examination mode and assignments?
- How about the placement support?
- What about the After the program support incase of a background checking call for final selection process ?
- Any email , online community or alumni support?
- Whether the course modules are updated with latest research regulation?
- Any personality development modules for interview training & effective communication ?
If you get 10 yes mark out of 12 question , you can select that organization without any second thought.
You can prefer hospitals which have clinical Research & training department. You will get theoretical and practical exposure at the same place. Apart from that, a high chance to get good industry connection also . These organizations select the needful staff from their performing students lists (Apollo Hospitals has this practice for several years)
Several universities and private organization conducts clinical Research Program. University program mostly helpful for academic purpose . (Example- PhD in Clinical Research ) However, if anybody wants to enter into clinical research industry , better to join the organization which has own research (Clinical Trial ) centers . Most of the universities do not have Clinical Research Centers. For practical or internship ,students have to find the another research organization.
What are the Clinical Research Job Positions Available ?
- Clinical Research Coordinator
- Clinical Research Associate
- Clinical Investigator
- Clinical Project Manager
- Clinical Data Specialist
- Clinical Trial Manager
- Clinical Trial Pharmacist
- Clinical Trial Nurse
- Medical writer.
- Regulatory affairs
- Drug Safety associates
Each position demands its own skillset , qualification and training. Most of the entry level position in clinical research is Clinical Trial Assistant or
Clinical Research Coordinator .After one or two year experience , the higher level positions are achievable. In Clinical Research , experience matters a
lot .Salary package and positions are depending upon experience , basic qualification , Clinical Research education, organization and place.
There are job openings in regulatory bodies also ( In India –CDSCO is an example).
The people who wants to move another country , then clinical research field experience will be really helpful. Clinical Research is a global industry
which absorbs lakhs of people every years.
Why Clinical Research is So Popular now ?
As everybody knows that clinical research a life saving health care field .
When we go to history there were lot of examples . In 1747 , Dr. James Lind conducted a Clinical trial on Scurvy disease that saved the millions of life.
International Clinical Trial Day celebrates on every 20th May for remembering that historical experiment.
After the outbreak of Covid-19, the global attention on clinical research has been increased . Every country spends billions on research &
development . Thousands of clinical research professionals are needed to conduct the clinical trial successfully in shortest time limit.
Covid-19 Vaccine is really a hungry market now. Every country is trying to get effective vaccine . Some resourceful countries are going ahead with
their own research.
Covid-19 badly affected in every field of life . Economical , social , health sector of every country is not in a good shape now.
Still there is no 100% effective remedy against Covid-19 . News of new covid-19 variants are coming out . New vaccine , new drug are needed to
fight against this microscopic invisible human enemy. Research Community has to go long way
Are ready to join this most challenging field?
Clinical Research is a global demanding position. It is time and effort consuming long journey . If you are eligible by basic qualification, choose a
right training institute and get experience . You can change several peoples life .
Our health workers are started the fighting against this deadly virus for more than one year without fear of own life . In India and abroad thousands
of doctors and nurses already lost their life.
Clinical research can only come with most effective weapons in the forms of drug and vaccine to save the life of humanity . Our parents, family
members , children , spouse and society members -Everybody is in danger.
Clinical Research Industry needs more and more dedicated Clinical Research professionals .
You may be one of them in future.
If you wish to know more about clinical research , please comment .
What is Clinical Research ?
Clinical Research is the branch of health care science which determines the safety and effectiveness of medications , devices and diagnostic products intended to human use. This can be used for prevention
( Eg -vaccine), treatment, diagnosis of disease.
Why Clinical Research Is So Popular Now?
After the outbreak of Covid-19 , the all world was searching for new medicine and vaccine against Covid-19. The news media published several news related the drug discovery process. Once the the potential drug or vaccine is identified , it should pass the clinical phase testing process on human . Covid-19 vaccine development gained world wide media attention.
Then after side effect of the vaccine made lot of media headline . All these ways , clinical research became a very popular word.
Who are eligible to enter the clinical research field?
Medical , Dental, Pharmacy , Nursing , physiotherapy & Science graduates are eligible to enter into clinical research after the training on Clinical Research.