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Developing a Medical Image Management Strategy for Clinical Trial Imaging | 5 Ways CROs Can Future Proof Their Medical Imaging Strategy Series

Nov 02, 2022 - 4 min read
Developing a Medical Image Management Strategy for Clinical Trial Imaging | 5 Ways CROs Can Future Proof Their Medical Imaging Strategy Series

This is the second blog in the 5 Ways CROs Can Future Proof Their Medical Imaging Strategy series.


The Current Landscape

The global clinical trials imaging market was valued at approximately $852 million in 2021, $1 billion in 2022, and is expected to double to $2 billion by 2030. This is due to an increase in R&D spend and a growing number of CROs, as well as an increased usage among sponsors as they are finding novel ways to leverage medical imaging to support safety and efficacy endpoints in their trials. 

Imaging is also one of the most expensive and valuable assets in a clinical trial; even so, images are often left behind at the site, especially for smaller, early-phase trials where site assessments are being leveraged to support safety and efficacy endpoints. Sponsors typically don’t need or want a core lab involved at this early stage, particularly for trials where imaging requirements are consistent with standard of care. In these scenarios, rigorous site training and quality control (QC) checks of images are not necessarily required. 

Failing to proactively collect medical images in a clinical trial can become an issue later on, when sponsors realize they need research imaging for future trial planning, additional analysis, or re-assessment of images by a central reader. At this point, it’s extremely costly and time consuming to retrospectively collect trial images; by this time, the images may not even be accessible.

This is where CROs can help fill the gap by including Medidata’s Rave Imaging solution on these smaller, early-phase trials, including oncology. There are many benefits to this approach:

  1. It allows for proactive image collection, saving sponsors money in the long run and ensuring a complete imaging dataset. With this model, sponsors can also easily add on core lab services later, or switch core labs without having to migrate imaging data. 
  2. In some trials, it can offset the need for a core lab, letting the sponsor contract all services to one partner. 

Importance of an Imaging Strategy

The key to a successful imaging strategy comes down to having medical image management technology that is easy to use and enables full data visibility, access, ownership, and control. This allows for:

  • A simple, intuitive process for sites to submit images.
  • Reduced QC errors and minimized risk of timeline delays.
  • The power to choose service providers and not be restricted to specific vendors, giving CROs the chance to evaluate the market and get transparency on price and value.
  • The ability for sponsors to access and leverage the data long-term (for AI medical imaging purposes, for example).

This simplifies processes for sites, core labs, sponsors, partners, and patients. Rave Imaging enables all of the above and lets CROs execute their medical image management strategy effectively, deliver the ultimate trial timelines and results, and beat the competition.

Medidata Rave Imaging Drives Effective Imaging Strategies

Given the prominence of medical imaging in clinical trials, it’s vital to manage these studies. Rave Imaging lets CROs do this at lower costs, faster timelines and with lower risk. Rave Imaging provides cloud-based, secure management for all medical imaging tasks in a unified and intuitive system. And as a trusted, premier clinical trial solution provider, Medidata offers stability to its entire network and all the trials it supports.

Below are a few key ways in which Medidata can help CROs develop their imaging strategy.

Reducing Costs

Rave Imaging reduces the overall costs of managing images in clinical trials—especially in early-phase trials—through the reduction of manual steps, data reconciliation, rework and out-of-pocket expenses, image prep time, and radiologist assessment read time. It also reduces downstream costs and risks by allowing for proactive image data collection, instead of leaving this valuable data at the site and trying to collect it retrospectively in the future. 

Runaway costs can occur, and often do, in any clinical trial. In early-phase trials, this can be detrimental to the study start and study progress. Given the dependence of imaging in certain therapeutic areas like oncology, this is already a known cost; therefore it’s imperative to choose the best and most stable solution to make sure you’re hedging against any risks early on that could derail your clinical trial or trial timelines.

Gaining Visibility

Rave Imaging helps CROs eliminate siloed data from different imaging systems and sources by integrating imaging data with Medidata Rave EDC, which provides a single source for all imaging information. Connecting and streamlining this data provides real-time visibility of all imaging data across all sites, clinical trials, and core labs.

Scalable Experience

Rave Imaging has been used in more than 1,000 clinical trials—with over half a billion images uploaded and more than 75 core labs connected—demonstrating a trusted and secure medical image management system, as well as extensive expertise across imaging trials. Additionally, Medidata’s breadth of client base (over 2,000 customers to date) ensures a proper pulse on the market and constant feedback about what should be implemented into imaging software. Rave Imaging is also integrated with the Medidata platform, providing a single sign-on solution for sites and other users leveraging Rave EDC or other Medidata products. 

Improving Image and Data Quality

Rave Imaging’s structured approach to image submission simplifies workflows and improves efficiency, reducing the time and cost associated with image management while increasing data quality (with automated edit checks and reduction in queries).

Unified Imaging and EDC Platform

A unified imaging and EDC environment is optimal. Both systems collect critical clinical trial data; bringing the two data streams together drives efficient automation and saves time, resources, and cost. On one platform, data from both tools are easily viewable and accessible, ensuring the right data is presented to the right users at the right time, without manual intervention. 

Integration leads to streamlined processes, improved workflows, accelerated timelines, and greater overall visibility. This can also significantly reduce site burden; if a site is already using EDC to capture data, adding Rave Imaging simplifies the software process for the site and harmonizes the process.

Develop Your Medical Image Management Strategy

Given the recent prominence of imaging across clinical trials, it’s imperative to have an effective strategy that makes sure you don’t have runaway costs and delayed timelines, while giving you full visibility and access to the images in real-time and retrospectively. This is particularly important in early-phase trials, where engaging a core lab is less prudent.

Medidata takes a consultative approach with CROs—engaging with partners and taking the time to discuss the best approach and strategy for any given imaging trial. As a core lab-agnostic data management solution, Medidata supports the infrastructure and overall strategy around storing and moving imaging data. CROs can partner with Medidata to future proof their imaging strategies and deliver the ultimate results.

Look out for the next blog in this series coming soon, and read the first blog of this series here. In the meantime, contact our imaging and EDC experts to find out how Rave Imaging transforms image management in clinical trials.

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