Barriers to Conducting Research: Helping the Private Practice Physician Overcome the Limitations

Posted by Laura Dalfonso on Thu, May 04, 2017 @ 10:28 AM

Practicing physicians have consistently cited three major barriers to conducting independent research and/or participating in industry sponsored research: lack of time, lack of money, and lack of research staff. This is especially true for physicians in private practice without direct access to the type of resources available to those practicing in academic-affiliated institutions. 

Practicing physicians hold patient care as their highest priority and often are unable to devote the time necessary to research funding opportunities, develop conceptual research designs, protocols, and CRFs necessary for conducting research.  This is unfortunate because often these physicians have questions or hypotheses regarding treatment comparisons, potential new indications, and other related research ideas based upon what they witness in real world practice. Following through with such research ideas could contribute to a further understanding of medications, diseases, economic impacts, and patient outcomes. 

All research requires either direct or indirect assets in order to complete the necessary steps to bring it from concept to published results that can be shared with the scientific community, patients, payers, and other interested parties. Once a physician has a research concept, potential funding opportunities need to be identified and applications must be made.  When a source of funding has been secured, a protocol must be written, case report forms designed, and a database built and tested.  The research may require an informed consent, along with IRB submission and a statistical analysis plan. All of this while trying to run a successful practice and keeping the care of patients at the forefront?  Clearly this seems virtually impossible for the practicing private physician, regardless of their desire to conduct research.  

 Opportunities to participate in industry Sponsored research can also present limitations.  The processes of subject screening, obtaining informed consent and completion of case report forms is much too time intensive for the typical physician to simply add it to his/her list of current responsibilities.  When you consider all of this, it quickly becomes apparent just how difficult it can be to do so without a team in place.

We here at AHRM Inc. have witnessed this over the past several years and so we have developed a service to assist physicians who have a strong desire to conduct research. We work to collaborate with them to complete all of the necessary steps to bring their research idea to fruition.  We will assist in procurement of funding, completion and submission of applications, development of protocols, CRFs, informed consent documents, etc.  We can build the database, perform the analysis, train the staff and provide monitoring services.  Our services are provided free-of-charge to the physician and are subcontracted through the funding source(s).  This collaboration allows valuable research to be conducted by helping to break down the barriers faced by private practice physicians.   

If you have an idea for research that you are interested in conducting within your practice, or would like to participate in an industry sponsored opportunity that has been made available, please email (ldalfonso@ahrminc.com)  or call +1(716)994-7912 to schedule an initial discussion.


Topics: Real World, Data Management, Clinical Trial, CRF