Clinical Trials at Chris O’Brien Lifehouse

Would you sign up for a clinical trial? Research Director Lisa Horvath talks about advances in cancer treatment, clinical trials and the difference they make to patients’ and clinicians’ lives.

I’m still alive! Tom, a patient at Chris O`Brien Lifehouse talks about the clinical trial that has given him more birthdays.

Chris O’Brien Lifehouse has the first, purpose-built cancer-only clinical trials facility in New South Wales. Chris O’Brien Lifehouse has the biggest Phase I clinical trials programme for solid tumours, and the largest overall cancer clinical trials activity in the State.

With 60% of our clinicians holding higher research degrees and most co-appointed at Sydney University, this cancer hospital has an active and exciting trials programme enabling our public and private patients to benefit from early access to the world’s newest medications, treatments, therapies and surgeries.

To be referred to a Lifehouse clinical trial a patient’s GP needs to complete a referral form or write a referral letter and send it through to the attention of the trial’s Lead Investigator. The Lead Investigator will then be in touch with the patient directly to assess their eligibility.

A list of trials open for recruitment can be found on our website via the button below or you can use the ClinTrial Refer app – an app that contains an up to date list of all clinical trials in NSW.

Once the right contact has been identified from the above list, simply call our switchboard on 1300 852 500 and ask to be put through to get the appropriate contact details.

Participating in a clinical trial

About clinical trials

Medicine is a science that constantly evolves. Every device, drug, or new treatment technique is tested first in theory, then in laboratories, on humans in a very tightly controlled environment, and then eventually extended to large populations across the world. Our clinical trials are all research investigations in which people volunteer to participate to test new treatments, interventions or tests that aim to prevent, detect, treat or manage cancer.  Some investigations look at how people respond to a new treatment and what side effects might occur to help determine if a new treatment works, if it is safe, and if it is better than treatments already available.

Chris O’Brien Lifehouse’s clinical trials, like all other forms of treatment, are carefully administered by our highly skilled medical practitioners. Our clinical trials are underpinned by robust and stringent governance undertaken to ensure our patients are safe and getting the best possible care. We work closely with the Sydney Local Area Health District to ensure our clinical trials are available to patients in a timely manner.

Benefits of participating in a clinical trial

Chris O’Brien Lifehouse is committed to ensuring cancer patients have access to the latest treatment. As science progresses, clinical trials allow us to innovate, discover new treatments and remain at the forefront of evidence-based care. Clinical trials are a major part of delivering high quality services to ensure our patients have the best possible treatment outcomes.

All clinical trials are subject to rigorous ethical and governance approvals in addition to strict ongoing guidelines. As with our patient-centred approach to care, each patient involved in a clinical trial receives individualised treatment, observation and monitoring from our highly skilled nurses and specialists. Each patient is cared for by their own individual Clinical Trial Nurse who closely monitors them throughout their journey to ensure they are safe and responding well to treatment. The relationship between a clinical trial patient and their nurse is a special bond, as the contact can remain for years. The nurse works as a care coordinator and a central point of contact to provide assistance, seamless treatment, follow up and long term care. Ultimately, our clinical trials can help to improve the quality of life for patients and lead to better outcomes.

There is no obligation to join a trial, however, they provide a number of benefits to patients including access to new treatments that are currently not available, improved health and wellbeing outcomes and ongoing support and monitoring by a Clinical Trial Nurse.

How to get involved in a clinical trial

If you wish to participate in a clinical trial, speak with your treating oncologist or GP to see if there are current trials you may be suitable for. While you may not be suitable for a particular trial at this time, as a patient at Chris O’Brien, our team will continue to provide you with the best possible care and treatment.

We understand every journey is different, and will support you to make an informed decision. If you are involved in a clinical trial and feel you are no longer able to participate for any reason, you may withdraw at any stage.

See the list of our Current Clinical Trials listed by tumour group, open for recruitment.