Your Rights and Protections
One of your most important rights as a patient is the right to informed consent. Informed consent means you must be given all of the facts about a clinical trial before you agree to participate. This includes details about any treatments and tests you may receive and any known possible benefits or risks involved.
Your doctor or a member of his or her research staff will give you an informed consent form that includes all of the facts about the clinical trial. If you decide to take part, you will be asked to sign this consent form. Signing does not mean you must complete the clinical trial. You may elect to stop participating at any time. Should you decide to leave a clinical trial, you can then discuss other treatments and care options with your doctor.
At all times, your medical records and associated information remain confidential to the extent permitted by law and the clinical trial.
Reasons people decide to take part in a clinical trial include:
- Gaining access to new treatments that are not yet available to the public
- Playing an active role in your own health care
- Helping others by contributing to medical research
There are risks involved in taking part in a clinical trial, and this will be covered during the informed consent process and will be part of the informed consent form.