Dr William van’t Hoff talks about the importance of clinical trials in children and about the different types of trials that children may be invited to participate.
Dr William van’t Hoff talks about the importance of clinical trials in children in order to improve the treatment of children, both in terms of making a diagnosis correctly and in terms of the treatments available. He also talks about the safety of medicines in children and how research contributes to this important aspect of their care and treatment.
Participation in research is voluntary and it is because parents have volunteered their children and children have willingly agreed to take part in clinical trials that advances in medicine, treatment and care have been possible. When children are aged under 16 years, parents are required to give their consent to their child to participate in any type of research or clinical trial, and when appropriate children will be asked to give their assent to say they are happy to take part. Older children, age 16 and over, can consent to participate in a clinical trial.
William also talks about what parents and children might expect when they participate in a clinical trial, such as extra blood samples, hospital appointments and tests. It is important that parents and their children make an informed choice and declining to enroll their children, or withdrawing their children from a trial, will be respected. He says that it is important that members of the research team are vigilant to ensure that children and families remain happy to continue the study.
The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) offer support to families and patients who are interested in participating in research.