With the help of volunteers from the Inland Empire and Southern California, Riverside Medical Clinic was established to conduct medical research studies that will answer specific questions about potential or existing medication options. Our focus is on serving our local community and allowing those with specific health concerns to participate in international research studies close to home.
Research studies (also called clinical trials or protocols) have been called “the heart of all medical advances.” They look at new ways to prevent and treat disease. People are needed to participate as volunteers to test promising new treatments that could benefit future patients. It takes 10 years of lab study before a treatment can be tested on humans.
Each study is unique and it follows a strict protocol (a description that outlines the objectives and methods it will follow). The RMC team includes doctors, nurses, social workers and other health care professionals called coordinators. Their role is to make sure the study protocol is followed. They will check on the health of each participant at the beginning of the trial, give specific instructions, monitor each participant carefully and continue to stay in touch after the trial is complete. Every research study is unique so the exact protocol will differ on the kind of clinical trial that’s being conducted. Based on your condition, some trials involve more diagnostic tests and doctor visits than you might expect but these visits help our team ensure that your health and safety are monitored carefully.
Before the study happens, there is a screening process. The RMC team of doctors and nurses will explain the details so participants can decide whether or not they want to proceed. If the participant’s native language is not English, translation assistance will be provided. The RMC team will give each participant an informed consent document that includes details about the study, its purpose, risks and benefits, duration, procedures and key contacts. The participant will then decide whether or not to sign. Informed consent is not a binding contract and the participant may withdraw at any time without penalty.
For more information, please see the National Institutes of Health’s guide to Clinical Research Trials and You.