Essex, UK (OBBeC) - Exco InTouch, a mobile messaging provider for the pharmaceutical industry, has announced that its text messaging technology ATLAS has been selected by the pharmaceutical company Pfizer to enhance the efficacy of its patient recruitment and retention in Phase I clinical trials.

According to the announcement, Exco InTouch’s integrated system will enable Pfizer to quickly identify, contact and assess relevant patients and maintain patient communication throughout the life of its trials across Belgium, Singapore and the US. Traditional methods of patient recruitment such as letter-based processes can often be time-consuming, costly and sometimes ineffective. Text message-based methods are quick and non-intrusive, offering healthcare providers a simple, cost-effective and direct-to-patient system of communication.

ATLAS from Exco InTouch is a regulatory compliant system used to send text messages to any mobile phone. It can be integrated with a wide range of existing healthcare management systems and is already used in a wide range of Phase I clinics to create regulatory compliant messaging services for patient recruitment. Pfizer specifically required a solution that could be fully integrated with its own volunteer database, allowing immediate text message-based communication with selected patients and enabling fast assessment of a potential subject’s availability via text message, outlines the report. With the integrated text messaging system from Exco InTouch, Pfizer is able to promptly send alerts from a range of text message templates to the recipient via their own mobile phone (for example “Text YES to 54321 to participate.”) Patients’ responses are then sent directly to Pfizer’s system, allowing recruitment staff to make immediate decisions regarding a patient’s eligibility to participate in a study.

This fully integrated system developed by Exco InTouch also offers benefits for patients already enrolled on studies, as the system enables investigators to send protocol-specific questions, events or reminders to patients using ATLAS, states the company. Text messaging technology for sponsor/patient interaction has been proven to significantly improve patient compliance and retention throughout the life of a clinical study. In addition, ATLAS also provides Pfizer with a complete audit trail by tracking the delivery of text messages with receipts which are sent directly back into the system, which enables compliance with FDA 21 CFR part 11 audit trail requirements.