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The Network Evaluation Committee (NEC) functions as an arm of the MTN Steering Committee (SC) and is responsible for developing and implementing a network evaluation program that contributes to the improvement of processes and practices.


Quantitative and qualitative measures are used to perform ongoing evaluation of various network processes within the Leadership and Operations Center (LOC), Laboratory Center (LC), and Statistical and Data Management Center (SDMC), as well as the Clinical Research Sites (CRS). As part of this activity, the NEC develops performance metrics for different components of the MTN, assesses how well the performance metrics are met, and prepares a report describing the findings of each evaluation. This report is provided to the group whose work was evaluated to provide feedback on best practices and areas for improvement. Groups evaluated then provide responses that describes changes to be made to enhance performance based on the NEC report. The final report, including the response, is forwarded to the SC for review. Being able to measure the quality and efficiency of the work conducted within the MTN facilitates appropriate allocation of resources.


A primary component of network evaluation is the CRS Performance Report. This report focuses on critical aspects of study implementation, including recruitment, retention, completion of study procedures, quality of specimen shipments, external quality assessments of laboratories, regulatory issues, data quality and community involvement. Other areas of the network that have been evaluated include the protocol development process, Study Monitoring Committee meetings, study activation processes and site support provided by the LC to CRS-based laboratories.


The membership of the NEC consists of site investigators (U.S.-based and non-U.S.-based), study coordinators (U.S.-based and non-U.S.-based) and representatives from the LOC (FHI 360), SDMC, LC, Community Working Group, the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development and the Division of AIDS at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, as well as the LOC Evaluation Coordinator and NEC Co-Chairs.


Contact the NEC Co-Chair Jen Balkus.


More information about the Network Evaluation Committee can be found in the MTN Manual of Operational Procedures, Section 4, Microbicide Trials Network Committees, Working Groups, and Protocol Teams.