In the U.S. only a few COVID-19 randomized clinical trials (RCTs) have been centrally organized, e.g. by NIAID, PCORI and individual PIs. Over 400 such trials have been registered on clinicaltrials.gov with dozens being added each day. Many of them are designed to answer similar questions and combining data or aggregating evidence could dramatically increase their efficiency and precision, getting answers to doctors faster and more reliably. Many of the studies getting off the ground right now are being run outside of the research environment by hospitals in need of decision-making information for their doctors. Like these studies, our primary goal is to get high-quality evidence to doctors quickly.
Furthermore, local outbreaks may taper off before institutions are able to enroll their target sample size. Notably, this has happened in China, where many trials are effectively suspended with incomplete enrollment and inconclusive results. If the US response to COVID-19 proves successful, hospitals will be lucky to find themselves in a similar position with a sudden drop off in COVID cases that could affect enrollment. If protocols are public and open for collaboration, an RCT can be picked up in different regions as the outbreak moves across the country. Unfortunately, no platform currently exists for such collaboration on RCTs.
CovidCP fills this gap by publicizing protocols whose PIs are open to various levels of collaboration: joining forces with other research teams to create a core protocol; admitting new sites under the existing PI and IRB; sharing anonymized interim and/or final data through our partner Vivli with other sites that choose to independently operate a trial under a similar protocol.