MTN is launching its Network Evaluation program that collects and analyzes information to objectively assess how the various components of the Network are functioning and to pinpoint areas for improvement. This is a comprehensive evaluation program assessing performance of many areas of the network, including, but not limited to, the Network Laboratory, the Statistical and Data Management Center (SDMC), the Coordinating and Operations Center (CORE), Community Involvement, Clinical Trial Units (CTUs) and Clinical Research Sites (CRSs).
Evaluation reports will be shared with MTN components and CRSs, so that the results may help to identify best practices as well as areas for improvement. The ultimate goal of the program is to facilitate MTN’s objective of working in a highly efficient manner to conduct scientifically rigorous and ethically sound clinical studies that will enable progress toward a world without HIV/AIDS.
Advising the program will be the Network Evaluation Committee (NEC), which will include representation from all sections of the network including CORE (Pitt), CORE (FHI), clinical research sites, the Statistical and Data Management Center, DAIDS, and the Network Laboratory. This committee will provide guidance on the scope of the program, methodology and standards to be used in the evaluations, and feedback to the components based on the reports.
A major component of the evaluation program is the Clinical Research Site (CRS) Performance Report, which focuses on critical aspects of study implementation such as enrollment, retention, data quality, regulatory compliance and community involvement. In January 2009, a draft of the first CRS Performance Report was prepared and presented to the Executive Committee for review and is expected to be finalized and distributed prior to the MTN Annual Meeting in April 2009.