The age of patient-centricity is here, what with the move to decentralized studies, accelerated by COVID-19, now places the patient as the nexus of a study. With ongoing patient recruitment and retention challenges that lead to more often than not challenges with the overall study, it’s not a surprise that the research sector seeks greater focus and attention on the patient. Now one of the industry’s most prominent contract research organizations (CROs), Parexel, a leading provider of solutions to accelerate the development and delivery of innovative therapies to improve world health, appointed the company’s first “Chief Patient Officer.” Now Clare Grace, PhD, will work with the other leadership to keep the role of the patient central to the company’s mission of keeping patients at the heart of all clinical activity.
Patients the Heart of the Study
As shared by Parexel’s Chief Medical and Scientific Officer, Sy Pretorius, MD, “Patients are at the heart of everything we do.” Dr. Pretorius continued, “Clare’s proven track record of delivering innovative patient and site engagement programs make her the perfect candidate to lead our patient-focused mission. We are pleased to welcome her to Parexel as well further evolve our support for patients and investigative sites worldwide.”
Dr. Grace comes to the CRO with over 20 years of experience in the CRO and biopharmaceutical industries. Recognized by PharmaVoice in 2018 as one of the top 100 most inspirational leaders in the pharmaceutical industry, she earned her doctorate in Molecular Oncology from the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology, as well as undergraduate in applied biochemistry from Liverpool John Moores University. She is active in several global and national-level advisory groups, including Society for Clinical Research Sites (SCRS) and the SCRS Leadership Council.
As Chief Patient Officer for the CRO among other things Dr. Grace will lead global patient advocacy and site efforts, including patient engagement strategies and efforts to enhance research diversity, as well as new innovative approaches to help clinical teams and customers work more effectively with investigative sites. She most recently served as Vice President, Site & Patient Access at Syneos Health, formerly INC Research, where she oversaw all departments responsible for patient engagement, feasibility, site identification, strategic site relations and investigator payments. She has also worked in the past in senior-level patient and site-focused leadership roles with PPD and AstraZeneca.
Parexel’s move is applauded by TrialSite—Dr. Grace will be a fabulous asset.