Health Equity and Clinical Trials
A Conversation with Irfan Khan MD
Dr. Irfan Khan is the founder and CEO of Circuit Clinical. Dr. Khan is a cardiologist who has served as a principal investigator on both therapeutic and device clinical trials for more than a decade and is passionate about improving access and equity in clinical trials, community engagement, and patient education and empowerment.
Listen to the Conversation
- Hear from Dr. Irfan Khan, founder and CEO of Circuit Clinical, a company focused on making it easier for people to find, understand, and choose clinical research as a care option for them or their loved ones. Dr. Khan is a cardiologist, electrophysiologist, author, and advocate for increasing access to clinical trials and patient empowerment.
- When he was a cardiologist, Dr. Khan was drawn to making a broader change in the healthcare system after his father’s Parkinson’s diagnosis. He recognized when trying to organize his father’s care that there was a need for a more unified, sensible, and straightforward way to identify opportunities and access points for care.
- Not everyone lives next to Mt. Sinai or Harvard Medical. We need new access points. We have a system that works, but it’s too slow and expensive and not open to everyone. Circuit Clinical is “putting up 5G towers” to make the connections between centers driving new thinking and innovation. Dr. Khan’s organization creates onramps for a wider distribution of patients to academic and private research centers.
- We’re starting to recognize that it’s often in the patient’s best interests to participate in the drug development process. We now have a positive way to explain research participation that resonates – the COVID shot. We can bring a therapy to market at lightning speed in a way that we never could before. Clinical research, when surveys are done, is testing better with patients, but more important are the conversations in the room between doctor or nurse and their patients. Clinical trials aren’t right in every situation, but there are some compelling reasons to say yes for some.
- The major issue of our time in health is equity. We have to be motivated allies to bring a more diverse group of people to clinical trials, both for clinical and scientific reasons, but also because access should fundamentally be broadly distributed. Right now, 250 zip codes are doing practically all the research in the company. That shuts a vast number of people out. Can we build a representative team in the research world? There have been missteps, but we can if we’re thoughtful. Where do we choose to deliver solutions? Are we aiding education and creating opportunity? Can we bring trials into underserved communities directly?
About the Show
Join digital health advocate and author Gil Bashe, on Health Unabashed, as he discusses the power of collaboration and innovation in improving care across the health ecosystem. Sharing stories and insights from a global perspective, Gil looks at the companies and people who are making a difference and offers his opinions on how to connect the dots to transform the industry for good.
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