I have 20 years of clinical trials experience.  PhoneScreen, the patient recruitment, retention, and compliance firm I founded was committed to improving methods of acquiring patients to clinical research and  retaining them there till the end of the study. 

After initial headwinds, our groundbreaking work was rewarded by being part of research programs with over 4 dozen pharmaceutical, biotech, and device manufacturers spanning hundreds of research studies throughout North America and into Europe.

Clinical Trials problems solved by CannaTrialsCentralized patient recruitment was our first innovation, which was chronicled in numerous articles and presentations as well as the collaborative book I co-authored, ‘A guide to patient recruitment’. We first moved recruitment from the investigative site to our own call center, which gave us complete control over participant recruiting and management.

Other innovations soon followed which included patient retention and compliance as core components of good research practices. We have incorporated this function  in our Clinical Trials TrackerApp.

Our second collaborative effort was published in 2004, ‘A guide to Patient Recruitment Retention and Compliance.’ This is still available on Amazon.  We will be updating this process for the realities of the internet and social media as we roll out cannabis clinical trials.

Our points of innovation included patient predictive modeling and our  real time dashboards which identified poorly performing clinical research sites for intervention, which we readily provided to keep the studies on track.

All these years later it’s good to see that pharma companies are beginning to integrate these services into their studies, as noted by James Paton and John Lauerman in their excellent article for Bloomberg Businessweek of January 24, 2019 titled ‘Big Pharma’s Drug Studies Are Getting a NASA-Style Makeover’.

But with all the improvements of data collection over the years, as the Bloomberg Businessweek article states, 70% of all studies continue to suffer recruitment delays – at terrible costs. The  $300,000 daily in lost sales cited by the authors due to recruitment delays is in my opinion a bit conservative when considering the patent life of the drug.

Poorly performing clinical trial sites have the ability to throw a study way off schedule, as we experienced several times, usually in late stage III studies that were incredibly expensive and time dependent.

These  problems, once resolved by our partners and ourselves, continue to define research protocols to this day.

It is precisely this knowledge and success that has been designed into our clinical trials TrackerApp that we will be using for CannaTrials.

We have decades of clinical trial experience, and it is a great opportunity to apply this wealth of knowledge to clinical trials for cannabis.  

About Joseph Sameh

Joseph (Joe) Sameh, President of CannaTrials, is a healthcare entrepreneur and recognized industry leader, author, and speaker.  He has more than a decade experience as medical practice manager with a previous 30 year career in computer, telephone, and communications systems. His unique contributions to better patient access in clinical trials, patient recruitment ,and enhanced management of the process, are widely recognized. Among his inventions, Sameh invented what we know of as the patient communications portal in your electronic health record that allows you to communicate with your physician.  Starting a call center for doctors in Chicago, MediConnect evolved to provide services to more than 17,000 physicians nationwide plus the majority of Chicago area hospitals.


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