AAU Celebrates International Clinical Trials Day

Addis Ababa University celebrated International Clinical Trials Day (ICTD) with the theme “Public Engagement in Clinical Trials” on Friday 28th June, 2019 at College of Health Sciences.

Professor Gail Davey from UK, in her opening remarks said that she has learnt so much from working alongside all the participants in relation to researching the disease with nobody else was studying it. She added that she has come with an open mind and decided to see the problems that needed researching worth.

“Such problems have been really laid in the direction of this very neglected tropical disease (TB). I’m incredibly fortunate to now work with CDT-Africa and I do want to appreciate what an extraordinary leadership styles that exist in CDT-Africa” she remarked.“Understanding the motivations of individuals in the centre, I am so delighted and look for many more years for collaborations and partnerships with CDT-Africa”, she added.

UK-Ethiopia Diaspora coordinator, Elizabeth Demissie, in her presentation entitled “Industry and Clinical Research Organization Experience and Perspective” said that medical doctors concerning public engagement should play a significant role in giving trainings to healthy volunteers about the use and dosage of drugs for the purpose of first-aid medication.

Sabina Mugusi, Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS), in her experience from East Africa,particularly from Tanzania,expressed that public engagement task begins from the stakeholders. She added that the government and regulatory authorities ask them whether or not any particular research is needed to enhance public engagement.

“Regional administrators are tasked with forming what actual research is going to be done in a particular area or what research opportunities are there in the regions. Once the targeted group is identified, the sensitization jobs in the forms of workshop, and focus-group discussions will be executed”, she explained.

Doctor Adamu Addissie, Chairperson at College of Health Sciences in AAU, stated in his presentation titled “Ethical Considerations of Engaging the Public in Clinical Trials” that public engagement stimulates the general public about the set of research including clinical trials and interest. He added that the issue of trust both at the grass-root and macro levels is one of the challenges in the engagement task.

According to Dr. Adamu, in connection with ethical considerations of engaging the public in clinical trials undue pressure is another big challenge which could hinder people’s participation in clinical trials.