Celebrating 25 years of the Clinical Trials Management Scheme (CTMS): Victorian clinical trial activity, 1988-2013 (#230)
The CTMS was established in 1988 by the Cancer Council Victoria’s (CCV) Clinical Network (formerly VCOG) as a funding mechanism to increase participation in clinical trials, through the funding of on-site dedicated clinical trial coordinators. In return for funding, sites submit patient accrual data which remains the only source of comprehensive data on cancer clinical trial activity in Victoria.
The method of funding allocation and reporting has evolved over the 25 years, to the current integration with the Victorian Cancer Trials Link (VCTL) website. Since 2009 VCTL data is exported in a site-specific fashion, sites provide recruitment data and a funding algorithm is applied to trials meeting specific criteria. The algorithm utilized aims to encourage new trial participation in investigator and cooperative initiated trials.
The number of hospitals supported through the CTMS has grown from eight in 1988 to 26 hospitals incorporating 43 departments, in 2012. Over this time, cumulative grant money awarded exceeds $14.5 million and has seen patient accrual increase from 594 participants (1988) to 2279 (2012).
The 2009 integration with the VCTL enabled additional trial parameters to be analysed, such as: the number of phase III trials has declined from 131 open trials in 2009 to 117 open phase III trials in 2012. The total number of open trials has however remained virtually unchanged, 287 (2009) compared with 289 (2012). Likewise, industry sponsored 63% of reported trials across Victoria in 2009 and 61% in 2012.
The CTMS has made an important contribution to oncology clinical research in Victoria, not only through the awarded annual funding, but also through the comprehensive data routinely being collected to monitor clinical trial activity in Victoria. This data can be utilised to inform clinical trial support, provide research modalities and trial information, and influence policy and investment into oncology clinical trials.