Streamlining medical trials through unified patient engagement

“Once we had LeadingReach fully up and running, our no-show rates dropped 75%, it was tremendous,” McKenzie said. “LeadingReach is very easy to use and has been incredibly valuable for us.”

Wendi McKenzie, Vice President

Long before a global pandemic altered our lives and introduced the importance of clinical research into our everyday existence, Wendi McKenzie spent the past 14 years finding solutions to maximize the impact of her small, but growing team—one piece of the ever-shifting puzzle in medical research and testing.

McKenzie, vice president at Tekton—a nimble and doctor-centric clinical research company launched in 2006 at one site in Austin, Texas and now spanning 13 sites across four states— focuses on building processes to ensure they get the most out of every minute.

“If you have a person who suffers from a chronic condition: rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, migraines, whatever it is. If you have a family member suffering from that, you would want something to help them with that, the only way that will come out is people doing what we are doing,” McKenzie said.

For Tekton, LeadingReach users for the past four years, having a holistic patient engagement platform prepared them for this moment, as they start COVID-19 vaccine trials—enrolling thousands of participants across the country in stage three testing—a crucial step in finding safe and effective vaccine options to help end the pandemic.

The Challenge

While all medical offices face revenue pressures, the nature of Tekton’s research requires maintaining a seamless schedule, pressures that only increase as their biotech partners race to get safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines tested and approved.

“It is so important for us to have no hiccups in our communication or schedule, as we are not a doctors office where they see 40 people in the morning and 40 in the afternoon,” McKenzie said. “Our appointments are scheduled for a reserved time, and we only have so many a day and if someone unexpectedly doesn’t come, that is lost revenue for us.”

Tekton’s process requires finding and qualifying the right test subjects, educating them on the protocols and procedures and keeping them engaged in the process to ensure the best results.

“Missing the appointments is not good for the patient or for the data,” McKenzie said. “Our sponsors are counting on the data so they can submit it to the FDA and get these solutions approved.”

In addition to COVID-19 vaccine trials, Tekton conducts around 100 different trials at any given time, each at different points in the complex symphony of research.

“Here they [patients] might come in once a week for three months, then once a month, then at some other interval for several years,” McKenzie said.

All this requires precise conducting, leaving a heavy load on staff who became burdened with endless follow-ups and burned by no-shows.

“Missing the appointments is not good for the patient or for the data,” McKenzie said. “Our sponsors are counting on the data so they can submit it to the FDA and get these solutions approved.”

The Solution

But McKenzie discovered a breakthrough with LeadingReach’s patient engagement platform.

“Originally we thought, ‘great, it [LeadingReach] was a way doctors could send over patients,’ and that does happen,” McKenzie said. “But it turned out to be much more valuable for us to get us the confirmation of our appointments and do all of our scheduling and communication through LeadingReach.”

By embracing LeadingReach to overhaul and own their entire patient relationship management, Tekton has discovered lasting value for their bottom-line, their employees and their patients.

“We started using LeadingReach for patient reminders, to send patients information, to share informed consent forms with them, and receive back our other paperwork through the system,” McKenzie said. “So when someone lets us know they are not coming, we can schedule someone else in that spot.”

And because LeadingReach is now the center of all patient communications—with appointment reminders, calendar invites and update notifications shared directly with patients—it is easy for staff to share relevant materials, see updates, discover declined appointments and find solutions.

With LeadingReach, Tekton’s patients’ lives are now easier: forms pre-filled out, automatically delivered calendar invites, and timely text reminders help patients remember their appointments, arrive on time, and make each-and-every visit easy and valuable.

“We started using LeadingReach for patient reminders, to send patients information, to share informed consent forms with them, and receive back our other paperwork through the system. So when someone lets us know they are not coming, we can schedule someone else in that spot.”

The Results

Since LeadingReach sends simple text reminders of appointments, Tekton can catch likely no- shows before they ever happen.

“I like that patients get text reminders, that one right before the appointment is so valuable,” McKenzie said. “We now know if they are coming or not coming. And we use that. If it’s the day before the appointment and they haven’t confirmed, now we call them. Our no show rates since we started using LeadingReach has dropped dramatically.”

Tekton credits the success they’ve had with how easy the platform is to use for their team, and simple the portal, notifications and messages are for their subjects to engage with.

“Once we had LeadingReach fully up and running, our no-show rates dropped 75%, it was tremendous,” McKenzie said. “LeadingReach is very easy to use and has been incredibly valuable for us.”

By focusing solely on research, Tekton’s mission is to empower doctors to focus more on the care of their patients when at their offices, leaving the research trials, management and enrollment to an independent office, where those doctors can have outsized impact in important research.

By unifying all patient engagement within LeadingReach, Tekton empowered their team to spend their phone time conducting screening phone-calls with potential patients, ensuring they meet all the criteria to enroll in a study before handing it off to LeadingReach where onboarding, appointments and communications flow.

With LeadingReach’s help Tekton discovered the value of unified patient engagement, empowering their team to track and interact with test subjects across study, stage and site. A streamlined onboarding process with simple two-way document sharing helps manage their precious clinical time each day more efficiently and effectively for patients, doctors and staff.

Freeing them together to unlock their best work: helping discover safe and effective treatments and technologies to improve all of our lives.

“We started with a strong team in Austin and have built a great culture,” McKenzie said. “Now we are focusing on growing strategically.”

“Once we had LeadingReach fully up and running, our no-show rates dropped 75%, it was tremendous. LeadingReach is very easy to use and has been incredibly valuable for us.”