Disrupting Clinical Trials with Inato’s Free Marketplace for Sites

Inato Co-Founder and Chief Strategy Officer, Liz Beatty, sat down with Dr. Daniel Fox and Monica Cuitiva from Save Our Sites to break down how Inato is doing just that.


When Inato Co-Founder and Chief Strategy Officer, Liz Beatty, sat down with Dr. Daniel Fox and Monica Cuitiva from “Save Our Sites” (SOS) (full recording HERE) their conversation made one thing clear: Inato is not just another clinical trials platform. 

As a global tech-powered marketplace that operates entirely free for sites, the SOS team emphasized that Inato is changing the game and bringing major efficiencies to both sites and sponsors. Leveraging technology and transparency, Inato redefines feasibility, empowering sites in communities around the world to participate in the RIGHT trials – the ones that align with their capabilities, goals, and patient populations, and the ones they’ll excel most in. “Often times we put in double effort on things that don’t need to have double effort… To me that’s the most powerful part [of Inato], not to mention the possibility to get more studies in a shorter period!” said host and co-founder of Latinos in Clinical Research, Monica Cuitiva, sharing her team’s experience using Inato.

To kick off the conversation, Liz shared a quick overview of how Inato’s marketplace works:

  1. Sponsors post trials: Inato collaborates closely with sponsors to post trials on the marketplace, which all sites can browse. Trials provide transparency to requirements and protocol details often unavailable upfront.

  2. Sites are matched to trials: The marketplace intelligently suggests trial matches based on site preferences, capabilities, and other criteria.

  3. Sites apply: Sites apply to the right trials they’ll do best in – right from Inato’s platform. They provide details on patient populations, staff, facilities, and even diversity initiatives, highlighting key attributes to stand out.

  4. Sites are supported: Inato's Site Partnership Managers advocate for sites, ensuring they put their best foot forward and helping them close the loop with feedback and site-sponsor coordination to streamline each step of the way.

  5. Trials expand to include more sites worldwide: Newfound trust with sponsors helps expand trials to community sites and more representative patients worldwide.

“This is a real business model designed to truly enhance site success and, therefore, sponsor success. It only makes sense. This is a big deal. This is going to change how we do research, faster, better, for better results.” – Dr. Daniel Fox

 

Alleviating Site Burdens and Challenges

When asked how Inato is “Saving Our Sites” – Liz addressed five significant challenges faced by clinical trial sites, sharing Inato’s tech-powered solutions to lighten the load (all at no cost!):

Challenge #1: Limited access to trials

  • The Problem: Many sites struggle to get timely access to relevant trials.
  • The Solution: Inato's marketplace brings all trials together in one place for sites to take the driver’s seat, easily browsing, comparing, and planning their needs.

Challenge #2: Limited information leads to pursuit of the wrong trials

  • The Problem: With limited information to base decisions off of, sites often wind up participating in wrong-fit trials, experiencing burdens and underperforming as a result.
  • The Solution: Founded in trial transparency, Inato's model brings visibility to trial details upfront. This transparency enables sites to make informed decisions, self-selecting the right trials at the right time, from the start.

“Educating sponsors on the importance of sharing maximum details up-front is something we’ve spent a lot of time on so we can post these trials with as much transparency as possible. Then we use our technology to put the requirements into the algorithms for matching the right sites for that particular opportunity.” – Liz Beatty

Challenge #3: Time spent applying to trials

  • The Problem: Sites spend excessive time searching for trials and completing feasibility questionnaires.
  • The Solution: Inato eases the workload by pre-vetting key requirements upfront before recommending trial matches, reusing and pre-populating application responses from relevant past entries, and streamlining the application and start-up process.

“We’re trying to completely stop feasibility questionnaires. Sites should not need to complete these long questionnaires... Let’s take all the work out of filling out the same questions over and over again. This is an area where we can use technology to do this – to reuse information and even use AI to pre-fill data based on particular trial requirements. For example, 40% of sites selected on Inato have been selected more than once for a trial. So the next time they work with us, maybe 50% or 70% of the information has already been collected.” – Liz

Challenge #4: Limited ability to stand out to sponsors, build trust, and get selected

  • The Problem: Standardized feasibility forms ask the same questions of all sites, tiering applicants based on standardized criteria without considering the unique site strengths that can truly help achieve specific trial goals.
  • The Solution: Inato’s trial applications bring a unique way for sites to stand out and build trust with sponsors, increasing their chances of selection (as reported by site users) by an average of 94%. With the ability to view their unique strengths, sponsors are more likely to consider sites based on their full picture and how they can help achieve specific trial goals. This aids in eliminating the traditional site tiering, which today perpetuates valuable sites being overlooked.

“We spend a lot of time with our sponsors saying there may be many reasons to pick different types of sites, so you can work with Inato to find the right mix of sites to meet your goals, not just the top-tiered sites overall.

Maybe you don’t have a competing trial in a competitive disease area, and that could separate you from others also interested in that opportunity. We also ask about diversity and representation and the different patient populations you support, which is really specific to the outreach and relationships at your center – it’s not just about census data.” – Liz Beatty

Challenge #5: Sponsor response delays and no feedback

  • The Problem: Sites face delays in hearing back from sponsors and receive limited feedback throughout or following a trial.
  • The Solution: Inato's close relationships with sponsors and support from Site Partnership Managers (SPMs) brings faster decisions and clearer feedback, closing the loop and helping sites move quickly to improve for future trial pursuits.

 

Reasons Not to Join Inato: 3 Myths Debunked

“I have to know, I’m sitting here thinking FREE, totally here for site success, no strings attached, no-brainer, so why would sites not join Inato?” – Dr. Daniel Fox

Wrapping up the conversation, Liz shared these 3 common misconceptions that tend to keep sites from signing up, along with her thoughts on each:

  1. Myth #1: There must be hidden fees. When something sounds too good to be true, sites tend to assume there’s a catch. Liz emphasized that there is no catch: Inato is always free for sites. (To understand this works, check out the recording where Liz shared more details on how they generate revenue from participating sponsors.)

  2. Myth #2: I don’t have time to work through Inato as I already manage too many feasibility questionnaires today. Inato is designed to reduce burden for sites, not pile on more. By applying to sites through Inato, sites not only save hours in feasibility but also narrow their focus to more of the right trials.

  3. Myth #3: My existing direct relationship with the sponsor is more effective than going through a third party vendor. Liz acknowledged her appreciation for these relationship, but highlighted the barriers that arise when roles change, individuals move companies, or a particular connection isn’t the right one for a different trial down the road. She spoke to Inato’s close relationships with different sponsor teams and the role of Inato’s technology in rapidly growing trust with the right individuals for each trial.

“Having all of the connections at all the pharmaceutical companies is very hard to manage. If the trials are available on Inato, it makes it much easier instead of having to hunt down the different trial teams at the pharmaceutical companies.” – Liz Beatty

With that, the team closed the session with an emphatic note to sites from Dr. Fox:

“This isn’t a scheme. This isn’t a gimmic. This is a real business model designed to truly enhance site success and, therefore, sponsor success. It only makes sense. I highly, highly recommend reaching out to Inato, going to their website (inato.com) and signing up. See what you can do to join the 3,600+ sites already working with them across the 70+ countries. This is a big deal. This is going to change how we do research, faster, better, for better results.” – Dr. Daniel Fox

 

On The Horizon

“Inato started as a kind of site-sponsor matchmaker of trials -- so where do you want to take this?” – Dr. Daniel Fox 

Dr. Fox asked Liz where Inato is headed, to which she shared plans for driving efficiencies beyond site selection through activation. She talked about reducing a start-up process that can take up to 9 months down to 3-4 weeks with new innovations in the platform for both sites and sponsors.

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