Did you know that before your favorite consumer products ever reach a store near you, they are evaluated for safety, efficacy, and performance in clinical trials? Traditionally, the primary way to conduct clinical trials is to invite participants into a research center or lab to study specific products or ingredients. In the age of COVID-19, researchers have had to get creative and find innovative ways to conduct trials in our socially distanced world, which is why trends like decentralized trials, or trials that utilize remote clinical data collection, have grown dramatically in the past year. At P&G, we’re meeting that challenge through an initiative eight years in the making: a first-of-its-kind remote clinical trial program for consumer products called Home As Clinics®.
About Home As Clinics®
Led by P&G’s BioScience R&D team, Home As Clinics® is a remote, in-context digital platform that enables us to conduct site-free, end-to-end, remote data collection. The program leverages cutting-edge tools and technologies to remotely test and refine a wide range of consumer products—everything from skin care to diapers—safely, quickly, and efficiently.
How It Works
Study participants are provided noninvasive, user-friendly measurement tools (e.g., wearables, portable skin grading devices) and participate in product trials via a mobile phone app from the comfort of their own homes (utilizing today’s top privacy and safety features). These easy-to-use clinical-grade devices help measure things like skin health, sleep quality, and stress in real time and in participants’ everyday environments.
Importantly, the Home As Clinics® platform has the same sophistication and technical rigor that matches the gold standard of quality measurement seen in site-based clinical trials. In some cases, we’ve actually seen greater efficiencies through this remote data collection approach. For example, in one study, P&G was able to reduce average recrui®ent time by 6.5 months, increase participant retention rate to 95%, and collect 12 times more information1—all of which help our team bring superior, life-changing products to consumers faster.
“Site-free participation means that subjects aren’t required to travel to a physical clinic for measurements, making the trials less time consuming and removing barriers to participation, like the need for childcare or transportation issues,” says Dr. Miranda Farage, Research Fellow at P&G and co-creator of Home As Clinics®. “Our R&D team thrives on ‘seeing around corners’—or anticipating the future of innovation—and I truly believe this program will revolutionize the way products are developed, tested, and ultimately used by consumers, allowing us to continue to deliver irresistibly superior solutions.”
At P&G, we know that collaboration is key to continuous innovation. To bring Home As Clinics® to life, we partnered with a specialized provider, THREAD, to offer a customized platform that collects responses of participant experience via an app and web. THREAD is one of many seamlessly integrated partnerships initiated via our open innovation portal, Connect + Develop.
Real-Time Results & Real-World Impacts
As you can see, we’re not just solution oriented, we’re insight driven. “By enabling the collection of real-world results, our studies have the opportunity to better mirror everyday life and potentially provide stronger, more accurate, and actionable insights on how —and with whom—our consumer products might be embraced,” Dr. Farage adds. In short, better consumer trials and studies mean superior products for consumers.
In P&G R&D, we know our panoramic view of the world is not complete without our consumers’ perspectives. We’re proud to partner with Home As Clinics® participants to help shape the next generation of products that may one day be sold by their favorite trusted brands like Pampers, Olay, and even those yet to be discovered. To learn more, visit https://us.pg.com/innovation/.
- P&G Proof of Concept Study, 2018.