Pfizer Inc. Ends Social Media Bid for Trial Recruitment

Published: Jun 20, 2012

A closely watched effort to use social media almost exclusively to recruit patients for a clinical trial has come to a disappointing end. One year after launching its so-called clinical-trial-in-a-box, Pfizer is discontinuing enrollment in the first such study that was designed to allow patients to participate from home by using computers and smartphones instead of going to a clinic or doctor’s office for medicine and check-ups. The drugmaker hoped to create a model for saving money that would rely on personal technology to more easily recruit patients and monitor their progress. But while the gambit generated substantive traffic to the web site that offered information about the trial, the drugmaker was unable to convert that interest into significant numbers of people who were willing to participate in the study, which was testing the Detrol overactive bladder drug.

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