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Joining a Clinical Trial

Projected Income $50-$5,000+
Costs to Start None
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Joining a clinical trial offers a unique way to contribute to medical advancements. It’s an excellent way to make a positive impact in the world. Participants can potentially benefit financially, but it’s paramount to understand the associated risks and benefits.

cons-icon Cons

  • Potential Risks: Trials can have unforeseen side effects or risks.
  • Time Commitment: Some trials require extended or multiple visits.
  • Eligibility Constraints: Strict criteria might exclude many potential participants.

pros-icon Pros

  • Contribute to Science: Play a role in potential medical breakthroughs.
  • Compensation: Many trials offer significant financial compensation.
  • Access to Treatments: Potential early access to cutting-edge medical interventions.

Do you want to earn money without going through tedious job applications or quitting your current job? Participating in paid clinical trials is the solution you’re looking for.

Apart from making extra cash on the side, you’ll significantly contribute to medical care breakthroughs by joining a clinical trial.

An Overview of Joining a Clinical Trial: A Primer

Being a clinical trial participant means participating in an experimental therapy or clinical research study with the supervision of health care providers.

Depending on the nature and field of the study, clinical trial volunteers are subject to observations or medical interventions like testing novel drugs and receiving treatments.

However, clinical trial participation faces a significant challenge with its low enrollment rate. Health Information National Trends Survey by the National Cancer Institute reports that only 9% of Americans are invited to participate in trials, and 47% of invited individuals would participate.

The Process of Clinical Trial Participation

Clinical trials involve the participation of individuals with diverse backgrounds and health statuses—be it healthy volunteers, patient volunteers with medical conditions, or those coming from a specific demographic.

It’s a long process that involves physical exams, screening, laboratory tests, and legal procedures.

Signing an informed consent document is also critical in joining clinical studies. The informed consent outlines their role in the trial, the risks, duration, and all necessary information.

How Much Can Joining a Clinical Trial Earn You?

Clinical trial phases usually involve three to four levels, and Phase 1 can take several months or less than a year to finish.

According to a study, the annual compensation range for healthy clinical trial participants during the trial’s first phase is $150 to $15,000.

Healthy volunteers who are unemployed earn more income than employed ones, with some earning over $18,000 yearly. This is due to the fact that the unemployed subgroup is continuously participating in trials compared to those who have full-time or part-time jobs.

Meanwhile, the annual median compensation for the employed subgroup is $10,000 or less.

What Type of Clinical Trials Pay the Most?

There are two types of clinical trials, namely, interventional and observational studies.

Interventional trials subject participants to various treatments or medical interventions (e.g., drug therapy and vaccine administration), which is why they pay better than observational studies.

Moreover, the first phase of intervention trials usually pays better than the latter.

Meanwhile, observational studies don’t involve such interventions. Instead, the process mainly involves recording and analysis of the participant’s experiences, behaviors, health outcomes, and more.

How Much Does it Cost to Start a Side Hustle Joining a Clinical Trial?

You won’t pay fees to participate in clinical trials—however, taking part in such programs may incur some expenses on your end. For example, you may need to spare some gas money for driving to clinical trial study sites.

But don’t worry; most companies or care centers would reimburse your personal expenses, which may include:

  • Gas and parking expenses
  • Meals and accommodation
  • Transportation fees

Research institutions also provide meal and travel allowances on top of compensation.

Where Can You Find Clinical Trial Gigs?

There are several registries and platforms where you can access clinical trial participation opportunities. You can also consult your local primary care providers and hospitals to explore options.

Where to Independently Find a Clinical Trial Gigs

You can find clinical trial gigs by visiting clinical trials databases. One excellent source is ClinicalTrials.gov, a registry and database where you’ll find information about ongoing and finished clinical trials across the world.

Through this website, you can find links or contact information of the corresponding study’s sponsor.

You can also find gigs by attending workshops, seminars, and medical missions. Consulting local physicians, pharmacists, and other medical professionals can provide valuable leads for currently recruiting clinical trials, too.

Lastly, engaging in online forums, social media groups, and communities allows you to gain insights into the experiences and trends of clinical trial gigs.

Gig Economy Companies That Offer Joining a Clinical Trial Gigs

For a faster and more streamlined process, connecting with gig companies or platforms that offer clinical trial recruitment services is an excellent choice.

These organizations specialize in matching volunteers with contract research organizations or CROs, clinical research coordinators or CROs, pharmaceuticals, and institutions conducting clinical trials.

Here are some organizations worth checking out:

Why You Should Consider Joining a Clinical Trial As a Side Hustle

Here are some benefits of participating in clinical trials:

  • Access to cutting-edge technology and contributing to significant research advancements: As test subjects to novel medical technology and drug therapy, volunteers gain access to potentially life-saving treatments currently unavailable in standard treatments.

This is most beneficial for those with malignant or incurable conditions.

  • Raise awareness and gain knowledge: By gaining first-hand knowledge of certain healthcare advancements and medical conditions, individuals can make more informed decisions about their health, allowing them to improve their quality of life.

Problems With Joining a Clinical Trial

Some downsides of joining clinical trials include:

  • Low success rate: Unfortunately, treatment and medical interventions aren’t always effective in clinical trials. According to a study published in the National Library of Medicine, the overall success rate for clinical trials is only 7.9%.
  • Risks and adverse health effects: Some trials may require participants to undergo lab testing, radiation exposure, and other treatments that might increase disease susceptibility.

At the same time, some clinical trial participants might experience mild to severe side effects (e.g., vomiting, nausea, and fever). This is mostly significant for patient participants or those with existing medical conditions.

  • Time-consuming and demanding: Clinical trials involve lots of medical appointments, procedures, and hospital arrests—that’s why participants need to be present at the testing site or facility. At the same time, some procedures demand volunteers to follow complex instructions or adjust to lifestyle and dietary modifications.

Frequently Asked Questions

Learn more about clinical trial participation by checking out these answers:

Do Clinical Trials Pay Good Money?

Participating in clinical studies is an excellent way to earn money on the side, but it’s not lucrative as your sole source of income.

The compensation package varies per clinical trial, taking into consideration the level of involvement it requires from volunteers. Further, some clinical trials may only provide stipends and allowances but don’t offer proper compensation.

Are Clinical Trials Necessary?

Yes, clinical trials are essential to ensure the delivery of safe and effective treatments and therapies. It also allows researchers to assess the risks and side effects of drugs and medical procedures before making them available to the general public.

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