July 08, 2016
Huffington Post Interviews Continental CEO on Entrepreneurship
Zak Mustafa takes a quick dive into the personal side of building a business with Continental's Saleh Stevens.
June 06, 2016
Clinical Trials and Minority Participation
Huffington Post blogger sites to Saleh Stevens's talking points on minority particpation in studies.
July 01, 2015
Saleh Stevens Discusses Eye Towards Growth
With the growth of the clinical trial space far from ebbing, Continental's Saleh Stevens discusses opportunities for growth: incorporating minority participatants as clinicians, investigators and researchers.
May 12, 2015
Interview with the Chief
In this candid Q&A with Continental Chief Executive Officer, Saleh Stevens, some more of the more mundane principals of entrepreneurship that influened executive decisions are briefly explored, giving some insight into the personal side of an ascending young corporate officer.
November 24, 2014
Lack of Diversity in Clinical Studies is a Solvable Problem
Saleh Stevens of Continental Clinical Solutions discusses patient disparities in clinical research and the role the revamped dedicated research company, now-site-management-organization aims to play in leveling the research landscape.
BALTIMORE, July 1, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Continental Clinical Solutions (Continental) announced it is expanding its Baltimore-based clinical studies network and is recruiting physicians from private practice to accommodate increased volume in clinical studies and demand for unique patient populations.
"Continental hosts clinical studies for physicians across all therapeutic areas looking to benefit from the potential of increased revenue and independence associated with clinical trials, but are either ill-equipped or unable to establish the infrastructure necessary to participate in clinical research," said Saleh Stevens, Continental's CEO. "On the protocol application level, there is a market demand for principal investigators, but the supply of interested and capable physicians remains amorphous and largely untapped." Continental's push to grow its network corresponds to an increase in pharmaceutical research profitability and a need for local clinicians.
There is significant profit in a market where drug development is still a $300 billion per year industry worldwide, soon approaching $400 billion. Industry growth is supported by increased regulatory pipeline movement. In 2014, the Food and Drug Administration approved 41 novel, first-of-a-kind drugs. This is the highest 12-month tally of drug approvals in 18 years, translating to $10 billion in sales and profit margins nearing 30% for a US market, which includes clinical trial companies and dedicated research facilities.
In some instances, a single study for a novel drug can generate from $100,000 to $500,000 in revenue in one year. "Quizzically, that profitability has not enticed physicians to incorporate clinical research into their practices. Even with all of the paid studiesout there, clinical research is overlooked due to the time and financial barriers to participation in a trial," Stevens added.
Clinical trials should be a welcome reprieve to financial woes often associated with the business of being in private medical practice; running a clinical healthcare business is expensive. Healthcare costs have increased significantly over the last two decades. According to a recent report from the Medical Liability Monitor, medical malpractice premiums reach up to $200,000per year for some physicians, despite 4 percent premium decreases in 2014. Insurance and Medicare have put caps on reimbursements physicians receive for services they provide. These costs have forced physicians to resort to increased patient volume to maintain revenue. Increased volume reduces time allocated for in-depth consultation. As patient care is affected, so too is a practice's ability to focus on change and adjustment to its business model.
Continental's clinical programs make entry into clinical research an attractive and seamless option for physicians looking to supplement their practice revenue without joining managed care systems. Continental offers a full suite of clinical trial servicesand clinical research support tools, which include: regulatory, budget, data management, patient and scientific expertise. "Our programs largely piggy-back on what a practice already has in place with its specialty niche and existing patient population. Also realizing clinical trial participation offers its own rewards with contribution to science, revenue and professional growth…it makes perfect sense as a career supplement," Stevens closed.
Continental Clinical Solutions, LLC is a multi-therapeutic dedicated research clinic providing turnkey clinical trial sites for community practitioners in all trial phases, bringing diverse patient populations and industry pharmaceutical companies together.
SOURCE Continental Clinical Solutions, LLC
BALTIMORE, MD (PRWEB) NOVEMBER 24, 2014
Continental Clinical Solutions, LLC (Continental) focuses on recruiting underrepresented patient populations into clinical trials at its mid-Atlantic late-phase research facility, located in Baltimore, Maryland.
“Continental was created with the idea of closing patient disparities in mind. Clinical trials play a fundamental role in medical advances," said Continental's CEO, Saleh Stevens. "From the Tuskegee syphilis experiment to the immortal cell line of Henrietta Lacks, dubious ethical practices and on-going safety concerns have plagued recruitment in the minority segment for clinical trials in the US and abroad." The exclusion of large patient populations from clinical trials adversely impacts scientific advances.
Almost 40% of registered clinical studies occur in the United States, equaling an approximate 66,700 clinical trials. The number of trials in the US increased by almost 16% since 2013, according to ClinicalTrials.gov, a website dedicated to information on clinical studies registered with the FDA. Despite the increase in studies, the percentage of the US population participating in studies has remained stagnant at 6%.
“When you further distill that 6%, you find minorities in late phase studies are terribly underrepresented. Underrepresentation means missed opportunities to address specific genomics and other criteria that will influence drug efficacy in the specific populations, sentencing future generations to inadequate medical remedies," Stevens added.
Though mistrust is a large obstacle in diversity in recruitment, insurance and cost of care continue to play a role in stymying minority recruitment into trials. Many unapproved treatments have been reserved solely for patients who can afford to pay out of pocket for travel and study-related healthcare needs. Those costs can vary from hundreds to tens of thousands of dollars, according to a report commissioned by the Pharmaceutical Researchers and Manufacturers of America. Previously, many insurers excluded healthcare related to certain phases of clinical trials under "experimental" and "investigational" exclusions in their policies. These exclusions, when triggered, not only denied reimbursement of trial-related healthcare costs, but sometimes resulted in policy cancellation—an untenable circumstance for patients already leery of joining studies.
Beginning January 1, 2014, the Affordable Care Act set forth legislative changes impacting some of the cost issues patients face when considering clinical trials. The resulting federal laws ensured that new health insurance plans cover routine care costs for people taking part in clinical trials. Insurers are no longer permitted to drop coverage because of patient participation in a clinical trial. Maryland, among a few other states, has been ahead of the curve with covering significant costs associated with clinical trials, with legislation dating as far back as 1998.
"With the connectivity that social media platforms afford us, it is incumbent upon us to communicate the changing landscape to patient populations who are left either unaware or out of the study pipeline," Stevens concluded as he reiterated Continental’s commitment to reducing disparities in clinical trial patient populations at its Maryland site.
Continental Clinical Solutions, LLC is a multi-therapeutic dedicated research clinic providing turnkey clinical trial sites for community practitioners in all trial phases, bringing diverse patient populations and industry pharmaceutical companies together. Visit Continental Clinical Solutions at http://www.continentalclinical.com.
SOURCE Continental Clinical Solutions, LLC