Find-A-Study links patients, researchers and physicians
Find-A-Study is a hub for information about human studies being conducted by researchers at the UT Health Science Center San Antonio. The website provides information to patients seeking hope for new treatments that are not yet available to the public.
The online tool also provides information for physicians and researchers who need human study participants, and allows investigators to find research collaborators.
In bold colors at the top of the webpage are numbers that show how many research studies are being conducted by Health Science Center researchers and a running tally of how many categories are currently being investigated. The numbers are updated regularly. Currently, there are 291 studies, 132 researchers and 29 categories listed.
There are categories related to aging and geriatric research; men’s, women’s and children’s health; diabetes; eye and dental diseases; nutrition; and studies for which healthy subjects are needed.
Find-A-Study became active in July 2013, said Mark Nijland, Ph.D., assistant vice president for research and associate professor in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, who was also the project leader.
“The key feature in moving it forward was to base it on the information we were already capturing when researchers apply for permission to perform research with human subjects, a process involving the Institutional Review Board,” Dr. Nijland said.
Joseph O. Schmelz, Ph.D., CIP, FAAN, assistant vice president for research administration, said, “Since Find-A-Study is linked to our Institutional Review Board database, it automatically posts our new IRB-approved human studies and then removes them when they are closed, so it is always up to date.”
Since its launch, new elements have been added, including links to the National Institutes of Health ClinicalTrials.gov and the use of National Cancer Institute cancer sites. There is also a link to clinical trials at the Health Science Center’s Cancer Therapy & Research Center.
“We have a very robust search engine that will help users easily hone in on what they are seeking,” said Dr. Nijland. “We are planning to continue improving the website over time.”