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COUCH Health

Our mission to improve everyone’s lives is bold. But to really make a difference, have impact and create change, we have to be.

By guiding organisations in making everything they do in clinical studies more human – more accessible, insightful, empathetic and easier to understand – we put them on the right path to improving people’s lives.

Our existence is born out of a very personal experience. In 2002, one of our founders lost their father to prostate cancer. Had his doctor been sufficiently educated on the signs to look for, he might still be here today. Had their father understood his own symptoms, he might still be here today. Had his father’s healthcare team been aware of potential life-saving clinical trials, he might still be here today.

And so we are motivated by the profound understanding that, collectively, we need to do better.

We start and end with the people who will use the communications we develop. Our purpose is to better educate people about anything that can save or improve lives. So we speak to them directly and plainly. We help them understand and act so that they can live happier and healthier lives.

We specialise in connecting with people; be that patients, study sites, investigators, healthcare professionals or communities… and our results speak for themselves. So if you’re looking for better, let’s talk.

Each person who has joined COUCH Health is driven by a genuine desire to help improve lives. And we each hold ourselves accountable in our mission, because it’s our responsibility to constantly question what we and others deliver.

We ask how can we be better? How can we do more to pioneer the change that’s so desperately needed? By asking these questions we’re able to be more creative and forward-thinking in the solutions we present to you.

Areas of Expertise

Making health human means that everything we do puts people first.

Pharmaceutical, biotech and life science companies turn to us to help them build strong connections with, and improve outcomes for, the people who matter most: patients.

We do this by improving the recruitment and retention of patients to clinical studies with creative solutions that build better experiences and outcomes for clinical study participants.

We specialise in bringing the human touch to healthcare by:

  1. Creating patient engagement materials that are actually read and understood.
  2. Generating deep insights that build patient-centric clinical study materials.
  3. Developing compelling creative advertising and marketing that improves clinical study recruitment and retention.

Patient recruitment and retention planning

We take the ‘error’ out of human error – so you’re left with smart, insightful, human-focused planning. From patient recruitment and retention strategies to patient engagement campaigns, we’re experts in knowing where and how to engage with real people, on a real level.

Some clinical study patient recruitment and retention planning services we offer:

  • Market research
  • Social listening
  • Patient experience mapping
  • Global recruitment planning
  • Global retention planning
  • Recruitment feasibility

Study and site support

Good design speaks to the whole body. It’s emotional, impactful and engaging. It can tell a story in a glance, transform complicated information into clear and concise content, and persuade people on an emotional level. With our understanding of design, and the complexities of patient recruitment, we can provide expertise that will increase the awareness of your study.​

Some study and site services we offer:

  • Clinical study name and logo creation
  • Study material writing and design
  • Cultural adaptation of study materials
  • Study websites
  • Print and artwork management
  • Investigator & site staff training and meetings

Patient recruitment advertising campaigns

Integral to our mission to improve everyone’s lives, we guide the creation of content that real people can find, understand and use to make informed decisions. That can motivate action, inspire change and give people the confidence that healthcare exists to improve their lives.

Some patient recruitment and site services we offer:

  • Online screening
  • Digital marketing
  • Informed consent videos
  • TV ads
  • Radio ads
  • Print advertising

Patient advocacy, and diversity & inclusion

Developing relationships with patient advocacy groups is vital to the success of any clinical study. If your study needs to reach an established patient group, or a minority population, then you’ve got to engage community leaders, patient advocates, and key opinion leaders throughout the development process. By developing these relationships with your target population your study will be welcomed and trusted. And we’re here to help get you there.

Some of the patient advocacy and diversity & inclusion services we offer:

  • Patient advisory boards
  • Patient focus groups
  • Diversity & inclusion consultation
  • Advocacy group support
  • Patient reminder tools
  • Patient exit interviews

Participant retention strategies and collateral

Many of our team are from a behavioural health background which means we like to think we understand people better than most. Add this to our people-focussed approach, and we’re able to create motivational strategies to ensure participants remain in your study.

This can involve:

  • Newsletters
  • Recognition items
  • Digital support tools
  • Patient portals
  • Patient experience surveys
  • Site engagement support

Want to add a human touch to your next project? Let's talk


  • Shire/Takeda
  • Pfizer
  • Amgen
  • Regeneron


Ash Rishi
Founder and CEO
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Katie Rishi
Founder and CEO
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Abi Davison
Head of Copy
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Chris Dutton
Graphic Designer
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Dave the Dog
Office Manager
Helena Taylor
Social Media Manager
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Louise Kelly
Medical Copywriter
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Natasha Welford
Account Manager
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Sarah Pritchard
Senior Designer
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Sonya Clibbens
Art Director
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Press Releases

COUCH Health Engages Mark Duman as Chief Strategy Officer

MANCHESTER, United Kingdom, June 15, 2021— COUCH Health, a patient engagement agency, announced the appointment of Mark Duman as its Chief Strategy Officer (CSO).

COUCH Health Explores Lack of Ethnic Minorities in U.S. Clinical Trials

MANCHESTER, United Kingdom, May 20, 2021— COUCH Health, a patient engagement agency, has released new research exploring reasons behind the underrepresentation of ethnic minorities in US clinical trials. Also addressed are how clinical trial communication strategies can be improved to better engage people from diverse backgrounds and ethnicities.

Abbie's (associate copywriter) first 6-months at COUCH Health

Like many others. Abbie spent the majority of her time over the last few months indoors. Yet, the last 6 months have gone very quickly. This is mainly due to the fact that, somehow, she managed to land herself a pretty good job during the height of a global pandemic.

Live panel discussion: Should diverse representation in UK clinical trials be mandatory?

This online event is being held by Innovative Trials, COUCH Health, and Egality Health.  Three organisations who are working to improve diversity in clinical trials.

COUCH Health recruits Rosemary Lakeru as Director of Patient Recruitment, Feasibility and Diversity

With the appointment of Rosemary Lakeru as Director of Patient Recruitment, Feasibility and Diversity, COUCH Health becomes one of the first patient engagement companies to create a senior role with a specific focus on improving diversity in clinical trials.

INFOSHEET 04: Create websites that recruit and retain patients, and engage and inform HCPs

We can guide you strategically and creatively to develop clinical study websites that engage, inform and enhance experiences for patients and HCPS, and in turn improve enrolment for your clinical study through increased referrals.

INFOSHEET 03: Specialist study and site support for better patient recruitment

Our targeted outreach delivers highly qualified patients with a higher chance of converting to randomised study participants

INFOSHEET 02: Improving diversity in your patient recruitment strategy

As inclusion and diversity advocates, we design and implement recruitment strategies that break down participant barriers.

INFOSHEET 01: Use the voice of patients to enhance clinical trial engagement and experiences

We get you important patient insights through expertly crafted patient studies and surveys, and guide you in taking action

Outsourcing in Clinical Trials 2020 Virtual Conference

We recently had the pleasure of sponsoring and attending the Outsourcing in Clinical Trials (OCT) virtual conference. Although we would have loved to have met everyone in person, it was great to listen to those who share our passions and values and chat with everyone throughout the day. Read on for a low down of the talks that resonated with the team at COUCH Health the most.

COUCH Health demands the clinical research industry improves participant diversity

As advocates of diverse and inclusive clinical trials, patient engagement agency COUCH Health is calling on the industry take action to make clinical research more inclusive and representative of all populations. Demand Diversity has launched with the aim to raise awareness of the lack of diversity in clinical research, and make change happen.

Patient perspectives: Can anyone else hear that ringing?

Like many of us these days, I’d describe my life as loud, hectic and a bit of a blur. Don’t get me wrong, it’s fun, but fast paced. I don’t often have time to really relax or just do nothing - to not be distracted by the TV or my phone. So when I do, I should be treasuring those moments of peace and quiet. But I don’t. In fact, I actively avoid them. Not because I don’t long to unwind and enjoy the peace of mind silence can bring. But because my “silence” is filled with a loud, irritating ringing thanks to my trusty tinnitus which has been with me for the last 15 years.

#1mLives: Make a pledge to improve your life

Just as important as improving others’ lives, is improving our own. With the support of all involved in #1mLives there’s never been a better time to do something good for you.

#1mLives: How we’ve improved the lives of 15,784 people so far...

Today, we’re celebrating! Six months on, we can proudly say that we’ve improved the lives of 15,784 people. Here’s a quick tour of what we’ve been up to so far…

#1mLives: Work From Home Survey

Can you spare a couple of minutes to complete our working from home survey?

COUCH Health launch a survey to give clinical research professionals a voice during COVID-19

Everyone’s experience of COVID-19 is going to be different, everyone’s personal insight can help improve understanding, and everyone deserves to have their voice heard. At COUCH Health, we want to help give people a voice and improve understanding of the impact COVID-19 is having on our industry, first-hand.

COUCH Health supports MS Trust raise awareness with a new campaign that puts everyday life into perspective

Manchester-based patient engagement agency, COUCH Health, in partnership with The Bank of Creativity, has created a new campaign for the Multiple Sclerosis Trust. While many have heard of the condition, awareness of its symptoms and what it means for those living with it, is low. The aim of the new campaign is to raise awareness and uncover the truths about MS.

Patients as Partners Europe 2020 conference report

Patient engagement: Actions speak louder than words

COUCH Health celebrates a trio of new hires including a Global Director

Patient engagement agency, COUCH Health, is building on a year of incredible growth in 2019 in which the company hired six new members of the team across account management and creative disciplines.

COUCH Health, embarks on a 3-year long mission to improve 1 million lives

COUCH Health, the patient engagement agency, launches their new campaign #1mLives in a bid to put the company’s ethos into practice and stay true to their reason for existing.

White Papers and Resources

#DemandDiversity: Why cultural safety is an important step towards achieving diversity in clinical trials

In our recent Demand Diversity research, a Black American participant said, “I wish people were more educated. Doctors are supposed to treat everyone the same, not have favourites. They need unconscious bias training.”

How do ethnic minority groups in the U.S. view clinical trials?

This year, we decided to do the same with ethnic minority communities over in the United States (U.S.) too. Ultimately, we wanted to explore attitudes towards clinical trials from these communities, understand the barriers in participation, and determine what factors may influence people’s decisions to take part.

Three things to consider when using social listening research for patient recruitment

We are looking at how patient research can power your patient recruitment campaign. A look into social listening follows on from this blog perfectly, offering a stronger and more authentic alternative to relying on data trends to guide your activities. So, let’s get started…

4 ways mobile ethnography studies can elevate your patient insights

How can we achieve more real-life, in-the-moment insights from different groups to understand their thoughts and behaviours? This is where ethnography studies come in.

#DemandDiversity: We’re calling on the clinical trials industry to include us all

The lack of diversity in clinical trials is something we’ve spoken about time and time again. By now, you might think we sound a bit like a broken record. But, the fact is, many people still aren’t aware of the underrepresentation, especially those who don’t work in the industry. Do you think if the clinical research industry could see the people they were leaving out of clinical trials, and hear how they felt about being underrepresented, it would make a difference?

Is this common data mistake killing your digital patient recruitment?

Without realising, you could be falling into the trap of using social data — insights into recent, relevant trends and topics — to inspire your content. Hold up. That sounds like a pretty smart strategy, right? In other industries, maybe. But in clinical research, not so much.

Why empathy in digital patient recruitment is vital

This is where empathy mapping can be incredibly effective.

Why people join a clinical trial

To understand why people decide to take part in clinical trials, you first need to understand how people make decisions.

Overcoming the digital patient recruitment challenges of connecting with patients
How many irrelevant experiences, ads, emails, direct messages have you rejected this week?
Clinical trial design and how it can be used to improve the patient experience

For this article, we want to go back to basics and describe the main features of the most commonly used designs for clinical trials, why they are set-up in this way, and how they can be used to benefit the patient experience.

What to do and what to avoid when writing about ethnicity

It’s always important to talk about ethnicity, especially when it comes to talking about diversity in clinical trials. It’s also important to know how to talk about ethnicity too. So, we’ve made you a step-by-step guide on what you should and shouldn’t do when talking and writing about ethnicity. Let’s get stuck in.

Is your clinical trial method tried and tested with patients in mind?

As you may know, we talk about putting patients first, a lot. This means thinking about patients when discussing, writing and designing recruitment materials, whilst also using a multi-method approach. For example, there are huge benefits in using direct patient insights from advocacy groups, as well as conducting social listening exercises. If you utilise these approaches, you’re more likely to engage with the patient population as effectively as possible. This is what creates successful patient recruitment strategies. Makes sense, right?

Clinical trial branding: 5 reasons it’s important to your clinical trials

Your clinical trial is one of hundreds of thousands enrolling patients at any given time. You’ve got to ask yourself, what makes my study different? Why enrol in my study?

Key benefits of a digital patient recruitment solution

Why should you choose COUCH Health and our new digital patient recruitment software - TrialVerse?

Everything you need to know about patient groups and clinical trials

Patient advocacy groups (PAGs) and pharma/biopharma/biotech and MedTech industries are all working towards the same goal: to improve health outcomes. And as PAGs are key stakeholders in the clinical trial space, you might be wondering how you can work in tandem with them for your clinical trial, and what exactly they can help you with?

How innovating study sites can improve patient recruitment efficiency

There are so many ways that clinical trials have innovated over the last few years. There is now a larger focus on making trials more patient-centric, more virtualised, and more efficient. Except, there’s one aspect of clinical trials that isn’t so efficient. You guessed it, it’s patient recruitment

6 reasons patients drop out of clinical trials and 6 ways to fix it

If you’ve successfully recruited patients for your clinical trial, but one by one, they begin to drop out, then this information could be for you.

Sharing patient stories for World Pulmonary Hypertension Day

For World Pulmonary Hypertension Day and we’re here to help raise awareness of pulmonary hypertension (PH) - a frequently under and misdiagnosed condition. Created in collaboration with the PH patient community, we’re proud to launch a series of emotive videos that help give PH patients a voice and the chance to share their experiences.

What you can do to help make invisible illnesses more visible?

Before we begin, you might be wondering what exactly an invisible illness is. An invisible illness is an umbrella term for any medical condition that isn't easily visible to others. This can include chronic physical conditions like arthritis and diabetes, or mental illnesses.

Training for PI's and study staff has to change now

We need to make sure sites receive training that truly focuses on meeting needs.

#DemandDiversity: Can new medical publication guidelines help fix diversity in clinical trials?

Over the last 8 months, JAMA have been working on a new set of guidelines for research papers looking to publish with them, which is summarised in their latest editorial release, “The Reporting of Race and Ethnicity in Medical and Science Journals”. Substantial changes have been made in the race/ethnicity data section. But what does this mean?

Don’t limit diversity to just representation in clinical trials

What is the power of diversity in the healthcare environment? Can it make clinical trials more inclusive?

The unheard, unseen, and uncorrected effects of COVID-19

The disproportionate effects of the pandemic have been highlighted amongst ethnic minorities, so is it likely that ethnic minorities will be more worried about participating? And could this exacerbate inequalities in representation in COVID-19 clinical trials?

3 tips to show patient diversity in your clinical trial materials

Here are some useful tips to help get your hands on authentically diverse stock photos.

How to make sure your adverts for clinical trials are compliant

You’ve come up with some great ideas to advertise your clinical trial on social media. But are they compliant?

Is social media for clinical trial recruitment justified?

What benefits can social media bring to patient recruitment?

Achieve clinical trial diversity by introducing cultural safety

It’s time to take a step back and consider one of the roots of the diversity in clinical trials issue: bias.

5 strategies that will improve your clinical trial recruitment

Let’s take a look at strategies you can use to improve your clinical trial recruitment today

Why you need to consider virtual patient insights

Collecting patient insights is something you should already be actively doing as part of your clinical research. But can you be collecting your insights more effectively?

5 quick tips for improving diverse patient recruitment

Let’s get down to business and talk about what you can do to ensure your clinical trial awareness campaign is more diverse and inclusive.

Choose to challenge for women’s health on this International Women's Day

Today, you could be taking the time to reflect on the inspirational achievements of many women across the world. Or maybe you’re a woman yourself, and you want to take pride in all that you’ve achieved? Ultimately, no matter who or where you are, it’s a time to celebrate the achievements of women.

#DemandDiversity: For International Women's Day, we ask... why do women often suffer from more side effects than men?

Women are largely prescribed exactly the same treatment regimens as men, with no account for the underlying differences in physiology and drug metabolism between the sexes.

Why you must understand the pricing of patient recruitment companies

Recruiting a diverse range of patients and engaging with them for your clinical trial isn’t an easy task, which means you might turn to patient recruitment companies, like us, who can help. But using their services is going to cost you money. So, naturally, one of your first thoughts will be “what’s my return on investment going to be?”, and we understand that. Honestly we do.

4 ways to recruit Alzheimer’s disease patients for your clinical trial

What key things do you need to remember to reach patients living with Alzheimer’s disease?

#DemandDiversity: Black history in clinical trials: It's more than just Tuskegee [Infographic]

Take a look at this infographic showing some of the most notorious clinical trials and medical research in history.

#DemandDiversity: The science behind diversity

We’re going back to the basics to explain why it’s so important for us to make a change.

5 reasons clinical trial drop-out rates are on the rise

According to a recent report by the CSDD, patient recruitment rates have been steadily increasing, which is great news! The study found that 77% of clinical trials are now either meeting or exceeding their enrolment targets, in comparison to just 47% in 2012.

#DemandDiversity: Names erased from history: A dive into black history of clinical research

You might be aware that February is Black History Month in the United States. So, we wanted to take the time to highlight some monumental moments and figures in the black history of clinical trials and medical research and share these with you

How media portrayal of clinical trials can lead to underrepresentation

We knew that ethnic minority communities were being disproportionately affected by COVID-19, and we also knew that ethnic minorities were underrepresented in COVID-19 clinical trials. What we don’t know, however, is why ethnic minority groups weren’t taking part. So, we decided to do some digging.

Can cultural safety training for sites improve diversity?

Through our Demand Diversity project, we’ve researched how the public is perceiving the industry during a time of heightened awareness, with a large focus on the perspectives of ethnic minority groups and key workers.

Why pre-recruitment projects should be your priority in 2021

Sure, clinical trials are unable to enrol participants using normal methods — but you can consider using pre-recruitment projects.

We must encourage conversations around clinical trials in minority groups

We recently set out to gain a deeper understanding on how COVID-19 has affected ethnic minorities, including their perspective on the pandemic, clinical trials, and general healthcare.

Should diversity in clinical trials be mandatory?

A panel discussion summary report

Patient recruitment and retention 2021 state of play

At COUCH Health, we’ve recently done some social listening to look into the discussions around ‘patient recruitment’ and ‘patient retention’, to see if these conversations have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Let’s take a closer look at our findings…

3 reasons why clinical trials will thrive in 2021

It’s not often that a single event can change the trajectory of an entire system, yet that is exactly what has happened to healthcare systems across the world and clinical trials since the first case of COVID-19 in early 2020. With reduced access to primary care, limited capacity in hospitals, and clinical trial participants unable to visit investigator sites, it’s taken countless innovative changes in procedures to enable hospitals, clinics, and clinical trials to continue to serve patients throughout the pandemic.

#DemandDiversity: New research on COVID-19 clinical trial perceptions within minorities and high-risk populations

Lack of diversity in clinical trials still remains on of the biggest issues for COVID-19 clinical trials. But despite the growing discussions, calls for change, growing regulatory guidance and much more, many groups remain underrepresented, including the elderly, certain ethnic groups and the LGTBQ+ community.

New from the PhRMA: Diversity in clinical trials principles summarised

In November 2020, PhRMA announced the first-ever, industry-wide principles on clinical trial diversity. The principles were approved by the PhRMA Boards of Directors and will take effect in April 2021.

New from the FDA: Diversity in clinical trials guidance summarised

In November 2020, the FDA released guidance to enable greater diversity in clinical trials through changes to eligibility criteria, enrolment practices, and trial designs.

5 steps to effective clinical trial branding

When recruiting patients for your clinical trial, you want the materials and information around it to be seen as reputable and professional. To make it clear what the clinical trial is about and to ensure consent is informed. And be something that people are going to remember. And with some trials lasting years, building awareness and familiarity is key to improve engagement. That’s where your clinical trial branding comes in…

October 2020: diversity and inclusion in clinical trials round-up

In our latest round-up of news surrounding diversity and inclusion in clinical trials, we take a closer look into the benefits that diversity can bring to society, learnings that we can take from the COVID-19 pandemic to shift our thinking around diversity and clinical trials, how we can address long-standing barriers to build trust in healthcare, and much more.

What are the biggest barriers in patient recruitment?

With the advances that have been made in clinical research, it’s almost hard to believe that the same challenges still exist within patient recruitment. Unfortunately, traditional clinical research models pose challenges at many levels and ultimately hinder the efficient running of clinical trials.

How are patient insights applied to clinical trials?

Behind every patient there is a story, an experience that’s shaped them, or a list of requirements that they’re looking for when it comes to their own healthcare. And it’s our responsibility to hear the patient voice and ensure we take the relevant actions.

Engaging with caregivers to improve patient recruitment to clinical trials

As caregivers are the people who look after patients in need of assistance, in many situations, they can be a key influencer in a patient’s decision making process. For this reason, it’s vital that caregivers are sufficiently educated to help support the people they’re caring for, which includes having the most up to date, correct and important clinical trial information.

How to lessen site burden with a targeted patient recruitment strategy

Picture this: you’ve created your patient recruitment strategy and you find more and more patients are undertaking the pre-screening, you probably think – success! But then you find out, getting too many patients to sign up could actually hinder the process.

Patients are ready to embrace decentralised clinical trials, are you?

Traditional clinical trial designs simply can’t withstand the impact of COVID-19. While before the pandemic, some in clinical research were beginning to adopt virtual components, the move towards designing hybrid decentralised trials was slow. But when it became clear that existing and upcoming clinical trials wouldn’t be able to run as planned, biotech and pharma companies have been scrambling to work out how they can take their trial out of the clinic and into a virtual setting.

Clinical trial recruitment on podcasts: is it a good idea?

The pharmaceutical industry is already using social media and search engine advertising for clinical trials, so why not consider podcast platforms too?

How community outreach can help improve diversity in clinical research

To execute a considered community engagement strategy, an involved and collaborative process is needed.

Can eLearning improve patient recruitment and retention?

Some patients will still want to read pages of informed consent forms before joining a clinical trial, or want timely updates on paper rather than a notification on their phone. Whereas some would prefer to see a virtual reminder, watch videos, and take online questionnaires. The point is: there needs to be options. And that’s where eLearning comes in.

Whats the difference between patient engagement and patient experience?

We all talk a lot about patient engagement and patient experience. And sometimes, these terms are used interchangeably across the industry. But while they’re both important, they’re not the same. So, let’s quickly clear up once and for all what the difference between patient engagement and patient experience is, so we can make sure that we’re doing the best possible job in both areas…

Building trust in clinical trials whilst it is in the public eye

We’re all well aware that healthcare organisations are generally perceived to be untrustworthy. According to Edelman’s 2018 Trust Barometer, we even saw a clear global decline of public trust in pharma, biotech, hospitals, insurance and consumer health companies.

Diversity in clinical trials needs to extend beyond COVID-19 vaccine trials

First up, the hard truth is that clinical trial populations are not diverse. People of certain ethnicities, females and the elderly are typically underrepresented in clinical research. And you might ask, “why?”

Insights from patients during the COVID-19 pandemic

We all know how much the COVID-19 pandemic has affected everyone around the world. And within the healthcare industry, priorities have been re-evaluated and processes changed, to ensure that patients keep receiving care.

September 2020: diversity and inclusion in clinical trials round-up

Our latest round-up takes a closer look at the different conditions where health disparities are present, such as more women living with multiple sclerosis (MS), and the cancer death rate being highest among Black people vs all other ethnic groups. Plus, there are a couple of articles with important insights about inequalities in LGBTQ+ communities, too.

Why Facebook is not the solution to inclusive patient recruitment

With so many clinical trials underway to find an effective vaccine for COVID-19, the competition is rising. More and more organisations will be looking to recruit healthy volunteers, while ensuring inclusion and diversity in clinical trials, to complete their mission of finding a vaccine and making it available to the public as quickly as possible.

World Heart Day 2020: It's time to make our clinical trials more inclusive

September 29th is World Heart Day, a day dedicated to raising awareness about cardiovascular diseases and how everyone can take steps to prevent them. It’s common knowledge that smoking and an unhealthy diet can increase your chances of developing cardiovascular disease, but did you know that ethnicity can also play a role?

3 ways to increase patient retention rates in clinical trials

Retention rates are falling in clinical trials. Yes, it is a bit disheartening. But there are some straightforward things you can do to turn it around.

Are patient recruitment and retention rates rising or falling?

First up, the good news. Over the past seven years, clinical trial recruitment rates have been on the rise.

Improve clinical trials through patient journey mapping

Could patient journey mapping be your solution to improving clinical study recruitment and retention? While awareness of clinical studies is low across the population, it’s not the only issue. It’s time to look at the finer details and start improving every stage of the patient journey.

7 important considerations for creating an inclusive clinical trial website

You might have noticed that all of us here at COUCH Health are big advocates for taking action to improve diversity and inclusion in the world of clinical research. ‘Taking action’ rather than simply talking about what we should be doing is really important to us. Which is why we put together information that can be used to make change, not just discuss it.

August 2020: diversity and inclusion in clinical trials round-up

Although the statistics have to change, we’re really pleased that conversations are still happening about the lack of diversity in clinical trials. More reports are coming to light about the lack of ethnicity reporting, and the underrepresentation of ethnic minorities. We hope this evidence and increased awareness will help bring changes not just for individual clinical trials, but across the whole industry.

If your clinical trial doesn’t have a website, do you even exist?

In a world where pretty much everything and everyone has an online presence, it’s almost unbelievable that not all clinical studies do.

Site-related factors that can impact patient recruitment

Joining a clinical study is a significant decision for anyone. Before a participant signs up for a clinical study, there are many factors that can influence how likely a patient is to take part. We have previously discussed the importance of patient engagement and the need for patient centricity as early as study planning stages.

Patient-related factors that can impact patient recruitment

Patient recruitment is, and always will be, a pain point for clinical research companies. It’s potentially the most challenging stage of any clinical study, as unsuccessful recruitment means big delays or failure. But you already know this. It’s why you’re here reading about what factors can impact patient recruitment.

Protocol-related issues that can impact patient recruitment

Many factors can impact a patient’s decision to take part in a clinical study. But what steps can the industry take to try to improve patient recruitment?  Sometimes, we need to go back to the basics and look to the very beginning of the clinical study process.

Improving patient retention with the use of patient portals

A patient portal is a secure, online platform that gives you and your patients 24-hour access to health information, such as your patient’s current medications, lab results, discharge summaries, and much more. It’s a communication tool, a medication reminder, an appointment booking system, an educational material, and sometimes even a payment tool… all in one place.

Emotion-driven clinical trial marketing: A missed opportunity?

Whether we’re conscious of it or not, our emotions play a huge role in day-to-day decision making. Psychological scientists have long explored emotional influences on decision making. Experts like Herbert Simon, a American Nobel Laureate scientist, speak extensively about how emotions can influence, skew and determine the outcome of so many decisions we’re confronted with every day.

Can involving patients in design transform the clinical trial experience?

While the research space is a heavily regulated environment and there are rules that we must abide by, this doesn’t mean clinical study materials have to be ‘boring’ or the overall study design must be company driven. There’s still opportunity to get creative and get and even better, get patients involved with design. And there’s big benefits of doing this, too!

Planning your clinical trial? Why you need to engage patients sooner

It’s highly likely that clinical studies are deterring patients based on decisions made in the early stages, such as during planning and design.

Patient-centricity in improving patient recruitment advertising

This blog looks into the importance of concepts and patient centricity in patient recruitment.

July 2020: diversity and inclusion in clinical trials round-up

COVID-19 has continued to bring diversity and health inequality to the forefront of people’s attention. Our latest round-up covers the July news around these issues, and brings you the latest initiatives that are trying to create positive change.

Medical Device Clinical Trials 2020

In July 2020, we attended and exhibited at the Medical Device Clinical Trials 2020 Virtual Experience. We really enjoyed the day and it was great to hear from like-minded people, while catching up on the latest in the industry. Here, we’ve highlighted some of the discussions that really stood out or resonated with us at COUCH Health, which you might find interesting too. Enjoy!

The importance of health literacy in patient recruitment materials

Have you ever read something that instantly made you want to read on? Or have you begun to read something, and eventually given up because it didn’t resonate with you? This is where the importance of copy and headings in advertising comes into play.

The importance of colour psychology on patient recruitment materials

At COUCH Health, we recently conducted a research project in collaboration with Lancaster University, exploring the impact of five key variables (copy, concept, colour psychology, headings and patient centricity) on the effectiveness of clinical study recruitment materials. Results to be released shortly. However, as a teaser we thought we’d create a mini blog-series – not only to showcase the results we found, but to emphasise why these variables are so important to consider when developing recruitment materials.

How patient experience mapping can improve patient recruitment

It’s becoming more and more important to find new ways to increase recruitment and retention in clinical studies, and ultimately improve the patient experience. With the average cost to recruit and retain one patient being around $7,600 and the loss in revenue (due to delays) being an estimated $40m per month, it’s no surprise that pharma and biotech companies want to be more patient-centric and improve the clinical study experience.

Can social listening can improve patient recruitment and retention?

With so many patients ready to engage and speak out on social media, a setting that’s comfortable and convenient, it can be game-changing for patient recruitment and retention strategies for those who are prepared to listen.

Using video to enhance clinical trial patient recruitment and retention

With the clinical study landscape more competitive than ever, advertising and marketing have never been more important. They can mean the difference between successful patient recruitment and study failure. In this article, we focus on the part video can play in enhancing clinical trial patient recruitment and retention efforts.

DEMAND DIVERSITY REPORT 02: Why is the LGBTQ+ community facing poorer health outcomes due to COVID-19?

We’re all aware that clinical trials have been discussed more widely since the COVID-19 pandemic. While that’s a great thing for raising awareness of clinical trials in general, it’s also highlighted some pretty big issues in clinical research. For example, the world can see how the BAME community has been disproportionately affected by the coronavirus, which has also underlined how unrepresentative clinical trials are of them. And over the last few weeks, we’ve been looking at other populations who are also being left behind.

CHECKLIST 04: Let’s make your patient recruitment strategies a success

From how to generate insights to define your audience to drilling down those all-important key messages, our checklist has everything you need to think of, covered.

Patients are ready for virtual clinical trials, are you?

Traditional clinical trial designs simply can’t withstand the impact of COVID-19. While before the pandemic, some in clinical research were beginning to adopt virtual components, the move towards designing hybrid decentralised trials was slow. But when it became clear that existing and upcoming clinical trials wouldn’t be able to run as planned, biotech and pharma companies have been scrambling to work out how they can take their trial out of the clinic and into a virtual setting.

WHITE PAPER 06: Uncover the true potential of clinical study websites

With 8/10 prospective patients beginning their journey to care online, 43% of patients searching the internet to for clinical study information, and 70,000 health related Google searches made each day, information on your clinical study needs to be online and easy to access.

CHECKLIST 03: Create patient materials that recruit and retain to your clinical trials

From content strategy to copy, design to imagery, our checklist guides you through key considerations to create powerful patient engagement strategies and materials.

Understanding religious and cultural barriers to clinical trial participation

In this blog post we discuss how you can understand cultural barriers to clinical trial participation.

Why we need to improve diverse representation in clinical trials

Diversity in clinical trials: The powerful need to improve it!  “One size fits all” is rapidly becoming an outdated concept in modern-day life, and medical research is no exception. Without diversity in clinical trials, any major discoveries are only valid for the sample of the population used.

INFOGRAPHIC 02: The Importance of clinical study websites

Here’s a infographic of why clinical study websites are important to patient recruitment and retention strategies…

WHITE PAPER 05: Improving the effectiveness of clinical trial recruitment materials
With exclusive research conducted by COUCH Health, gain insight into clinical trial recruitment materials best practice.
DEMAND DIVERSITY REPORT 01: Exploring attitudes towards clinical research among people from different ethnic groups in the UK

This report reveals insights from the people themselves, and discusses the starting points for overcoming current challenges.

5 creative tactics for your patient recruitment strategies

For effective clinical trial recruitment strategies, understanding the challenges related to recruitment and retention of clinical trial participants is one thing, but it’s important to find innovative solutions to the problem.

CHECKLIST 02: How to make deeper connections with research study participants

The truth is, the better you understand research study participants and the better you get to know them, the better chance you have of recruiting and retaining the right people for your clinical trial. But it’s not all about you… Going beyond to understand patients means you can create a more personalised and meaningful experience for them, too.

How to measure and maximise your patient recruitment spend ROI

Creating clinical trial advertising to recruit participants is an expensive process. But it’s also vital to keeping your studies filled so you can pursue important clinical research. And so, to ensure this cycle continues, you need to be able to prove that you’re getting the most out of your advertising spend, ready for when you need it next time.

INFOGRAPHIC 01: Patient Engagement in Clinical Trials

Patient engagement is widely discussed in the clinical research landscape, but how much of what’s being said is just lip service?   ​

How to develop creative patient retention strategies for your clinical trials

It’s one thing to get people into your clinical trials but keeping them there is not only more of a challenge, it’s also vital to the success of the trial and your return on investment. It’s an old maxim in business that it costs five times more to get a new client than to retain a current one, so it’s surprising that in spite of this fact, statistics show only 18% of sponsors actually try to develop retention strategies.

WHITE PAPER 04: Making your clinical trials patient-centric to ensure success

Are the right people designing your clinical trial?

Can patient insights improve clinical trial recruitment strategies?

Clinical trials are a reliable method of testing new treatments before making them available to the general public. To generate the data needed to determine whether the drugs are safe and effective, it’s necessary to conduct double-blind studies with one or more groups of participants. Clinical recruitment strategies are challenging, however, taking the right approach can equip you for success.

CHECKLIST 01: Patient journey mapping for clinical trial experiences

Plan ahead to support every step of clinical trial journey.

The importance of creativity in patient recruitment campaigns

Design in advertising is about more than simply the logos, images, page layouts and fonts that comprise a brand’s aesthetic; it is the main artery connecting your company to your brand and ultimately to your customer. In the world of clinical trials, the level of care with which a trial is developed should be reflected in the clinical trial marketing advertising and recruitment process.

Social listening report: Is COVID-19 impacting clinical trial recruitment?

The short answer, perhaps obviously, is yes.

The fight against COVID-19 needs to have diversity at the heart of its strategy

There are too many conditions and diseases that have treatments and medicines developed without true testing on the minority populations they affect most. So for too many people, they simply don’t work. If we’re going to stand by the mantra that “we’re all in this together” shouldn’t we be putting it into action in every way we can?

Using behavioural psychology to improve patient recruitment

Patient recruitment for a clinical trials is a challenging process filled with the potential to alienate participants. By taking a psychological approach you may get better results.

WHITE PAPER 03: From recruitment barrier to participant enabler: Rethinking informed consent

Why a strong informed consent strategy can increase clinical trial success

What challenges still face clinical trial recruitment and retention?

Discover the reasons for the current clinical trial recruitment challenges facing pharma and the life sciences industry, and how the search for solutions to the problem continues

We need to wrap our heads around this!

There is no shortage of information developed in healthcare communications that’s intended to help health seekers understand their treatment and medication options. Unfortunately, health literacy statistics among patient groups strongly indicate these materials often miss the mark.

Will COVID-19 necessitate a change in thinking around clinical trials?

The global outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19) and current misinformation infiltrating our consciousness on social media has been a challenge to get our heads around, but it’s undeniable that there’s a public health risk currently proposed by the pandemic. With Italy in lockdown and other countries possibly following suit, will this outbreak impact ongoing clinical studies and those currently enrolling patients?

WHITE PAPER 02: Recruiting diverse populations in clinical trials

How to ensure your patient recruitment strategy & materials don't discriminate.

WHITE PAPER 01: The increasing importance of clinical trial marketing advertising in patient recruitment

Learn why advertising is more important than ever in clinical studies

Using human insights to push healthcare communications forward

This blog highlights the value of human perspectives, showing how insights can propel healthcare communications forward to ultimately improve lives

The role of gratitude in clinical trials

In this blog, we discuss the meaning of gratitude, while asking what does it mean to say thank you to your clinical trial participants?

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Latest content on this profile

#DemandDiversity: Why cultural safety is an important step towards achieving diversity in clinical trials
In our recent Demand Diversity research, a Black American participant said, “I wish people were more educated. Doctors are supposed to treat everyone the same, not have favourites. They need unconscious bias training.”
COUCH Health
How do ethnic minority groups in the U.S. view clinical trials?
This year, we decided to do the same with ethnic minority communities over in the United States (U.S.) too. Ultimately, we wanted to explore attitudes towards clinical trials from these communities, understand the barriers in participation, and determine what factors may influence people’s decisions to take part.
COUCH Health
Three things to consider when using social listening research for patient recruitment
We are looking at how patient research can power your patient recruitment campaign. A look into social listening follows on from this blog perfectly, offering a stronger and more authentic alternative to relying on data trends to guide your activities. So, let’s get started…
COUCH Health
4 ways mobile ethnography studies can elevate your patient insights
How can we achieve more real-life, in-the-moment insights from different groups to understand their thoughts and behaviours? This is where ethnography studies come in.
COUCH Health
#DemandDiversity: We’re calling on the clinical trials industry to include us all
The lack of diversity in clinical trials is something we’ve spoken about time and time again. By now, you might think we sound a bit like a broken record. But, the fact is, many people still aren’t aware of the underrepresentation, especially those who don’t work in the industry. Do you think if the clinical research industry could see the people they were leaving out of clinical trials, and hear how they felt about being underrepresented, it would make a difference?
COUCH Health
Include Us All in Your Clinical Trials

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