Clinical trials are the gold standard when evaluating the potential of a novel treatment. A standard that should not be compromised during a pandemic. However undertaking clinical studies during a pandemic is challenging, as we need to understand how many people will be infected and where these infections will take place. The situation is made more complex by the fact that COVID-19 is a novel disease. There is limited understanding of the natural history of the disease, which makes it difficult to choose how effectiveness of a treatment should be assessed.
We are working closely with clinical experts, to utilise efficient (adaptive) trial designs to evaluate possible treatment options for COVID-19. Key to our work is having the opportunity to dismiss insufficiently promising treatments quickly, and at the same time, allow early decisions about positive effects to be made early as well. We are also exploring multiple treatments within one trial.