Increasing the Availability and Quality of Early Phase Clinical Trials Through the Addition of a Specialized Pediatric Advanced Nurse Practitioner
In the last fifty years survival for children with childhood cancer has risen dramatically. This remarkable increase in survival is directly related to patients' and families willingness and commitment to participate in well run clinical trials. For every child who is enrolled on a clinical trial there is an associated morale obligation on the part of the administering treatment/care facility to perform these trials in complete compliance with all study requirements and regulations. This adherence to properly run trials ensures the best care for children and the ability to use the data obtained to guide better less toxic therapies to improve the lives of these patients and those who will be diagnosed with childhood malignancies in the future. Early phase clinical oncology trials are uniquely complicated (due to the need to take into account a child's changing physiology) and require dedicated, properly trained personnel to oversee study compliance and ensure the well-being of patients throughout the course of treatment. As an institution that participates in multiple national Phase I and II consortiums and supports a strong clinical research program, the addition of an Advance Practice Pediatric Nurse Practitioner to the Children’s Memorial Oncology program is essential to ensuring a high quality of care for the multitude of patients in our care. In doing so, we will extend the hope of new treatment options to even more young patients.