Understanding clinical trials

Information to help you understand clinical trials

What is a clinical trial?

Why be part of a clinical trial?

How clinical trials work

What happens when a trial is completed?

Consumer guide to clinical trials

Some questions to ask:

  • What will actually happen during the research?
  • Will I or my child be helped by the research?
  • Who will benefit from the research?
  • Are there any risks in taking part?
  • What will happen if I don’t take part?
  • Will I receive any money for taking part?

Some points to consider:

  • You may not personally be helped by the research study.
  • In the future, the research results could help others.
  • Taking part in research is completely voluntary.
  • You can withdraw from a research trial at any time without explanation.

Other helpful information:

Watch this video of Dr Karen Best from our Child Nutrition Research Centre, SAHMRI Healthy Mothers Babies & Children talking about the importance of clinical trials and how she got into this research field.

Karen says: “Improvements in healthcare do not just happen, quality clinical research is essential to ensure that advances in preventative health and new treatments for disease are based on high-quality evidence. I am so grateful to every person who decides to be a part of a clinical trial. It’s an incredibly generous act. The women taking part in our clinical trial are helping countless women and their babies in the future.”

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