Medtech startup Evrima Technologies is helping to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of clinical trials by connecting patients, clinicians and researcher
In 2020, the first vaccine for COVID-19 was developed, tested and approved. Due to unprecedented global cooperation, legions of volunteers and prioritised funding and manufacturing, the process took less than one year, a monumental achievement for humanity. Unfortunately, this efficiency is not normal in the medical industry, where vaccines for infectious diseases typically take years to develop.
All treatments and medicines go through a rigorous process of clinical trials to prove both safety and efficacy. The process is slow and complex because trials need to be carefully designed, approved by ethics boards and then funded in order to proceed. And this rigorous development and testing is applied not only to new medicines, but also when comparing different formulations or trialling existing products in new areas. It can easily take over a decade to go from lab to clinic or from bench to bedside.
A key factor in the clinical trial process is the difficult task of identifying and recruiting patients that meet the criteria and protocol for a trial. And it is here that Australian medtech startup, Evrima Technologies, is aiming to make a big difference. Founded by CEO Charlotte Bradshaw, Evrima’s goal is to streamline recruitment for clinical trials. By linking clinicians, patients and researchers, Evrima is paving the way towards faster medical research.
Bradshaw first noticed issues with the clinical trial recruitment while she was working for Perth-based startup Linear Clinical Research. As part of her role, Bradshaw was responsible for supporting the growth of patient recruitment and marketing. “We had a fantastic team, great leadership,” Bradshaw explains. “But the challenge was finding enough people at the rate that we were winning work.” Quickly realising that this was a global problem in the medical industry, Bradshaw put years of research, thought and testing towards the problem before founding Evrima in 2019.
Recruiting, Referring & Retaining
Initially, Evrima sourced potential clinical trial participants by marketing directly, allowing Australians and New Zelanders to register to hear about trial opportunities. But over the last eighteen months, the company has developed technology for electronic health record integration in primary care settings. According to Bradshaw, "Research shows patients trust their GP. They trust their healthcare providers. But GPs do not have the ability to get information quickly about trial opportunities.” Evrima’s technology provides digital phenotyping for clinical trials, taking the inclusion and exclusion criteria from trial protocols and providing it to GPs at scale. “It's really about making it as easy and fluid as possible,” says Bradshaw. “Like they would refer a patient to a normal specialist, but in this case, they're referring the patient to a clinical trial.”
Evrima has also built an end-to-end platform to retain participants and enable a more efficient clinical trial process. The platform allows participants to enrol, matches them with appropriate trials and allows for workflow automation making it easy for researchers to focus on the clinical conduct of the trial. Evrima’s clients are the pharmaceutical and biotech companies that sponsor this research, along with the Contact Research Organisations (CRO) that provide support and help facilitate trials. GPs and patients, on the other hand, are stakeholders that are able to use Evrima’s products and information, but do not pay for trial access.
The Trials Ahead
Having recently closed a capital raise and signed a global master service agreement with a major pharmaceutical company, Evrima is now looking to scale their team. “That really excites me,” says Bradshaw. “Because it shows and demonstrates that we have got well past product market fit. We're now into that scalable growth phase of the business.”
Evrima has built strong customer connections over the last few years and Bradshaw sees a number of opportunities on the horizon. Pharmaceutical companies and biotechs often conduct trials in multiple markets, so there is a strong incentive for global expansion. According to Bradshaw, part of Evrima’s growth strategy will be to focus on entering the US market this year, while continuing to service their existing client base in Australia and New Zealand. With a growing team, new markets to conquer and keen interest from clients, Evrima seems set to change how we approach clinical trials, and perhaps, how quickly we get from bench to bedside.
To hear more about how Evrima is streamlining clinical trial recruitment and research, listen to our full chat with CEO and Founder Charlotte Bradshaw at https://www.artesianinvest.com/podcast and check out https://evrima.com.au/.