NCCN Pharmacy Directors Forum Releases Recommendations for Safe Distribution of Investigational Drugs for Clinical Trials

PLYMOUTH MEETING, Pa., March 15, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — The National Comprehensive Cancer Network® (NCCN®) today announced the release of new expert consensus recommendations to address routine issues that may arise when prescribing, receiving, storing, preparing and administering investigational drugs. These new recommendations come from an Investigational Drug Services (IDS) task force from the NCCN Pharmacy Directors Forum. They aim to build on existing resources to help improve the safety and efficiency of research studies.

“Clinical trials provide lifesaving treatment options for many of our cancer patients,” said Stephen PolleyPharmD, Assistant Director – Cancer Pharmacy Services, The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute, co-lead of the NCCN working group. “Promoting standardization and establishing robust IDS policies and procedures will help improve the feasibility of initiating and successfully completing clinical trials. We hope these guidelines will be a helpful resource for IDS Chiefs of Pharmacy and Pharmacists when creating or updating their policies and procedures. »

“Clinical trials are becoming more complex and logistical,” agreed NCCN Task Force Co-Lead Sapna Amin, PharmD, Manager, Investigational Pharmacy Services, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. “Understanding pharmacy workflows and working with sponsors is key to ensuring their success. The IDS plays a critical and complex role in the clinical trial. Having a standardized approach across institutions benefits patients, institutions and trial sponsors.

IDS recommendations were published in the American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy. They focus on seven areas of need identified by the working group:

  1. Supplier investigational product (IP) labeling
  2. Build and validate treatment plans specific to research in the medical record
  3. Restrictions on retained intellectual property
  4. Roles and training of IDS technicians
  5. Handling Hazardous Drugs and Using Closed-Circuit Transfer Devices
  6. IDS Participation in Interactive Response Technology (IRT)
  7. Temperature monitoring while intellectual property is stored in institutional assets

The task force also suggests involving IDS pharmacists earlier in research development to capitalize on their unique expertise to improve study design and planning and mitigate many potential issues. that occur during study treatment.

“If these recommendations can help improve the speed and safety with which we can set up a clinical trial in our local institutions, then everyone wins,” Polley said.

Complete, evidence-based recommendations are available at

About the Comprehensive National Cancer Network
The Comprehensive National Cancer Network® (NCCN®) is a non-profit alliance of leading cancer centers devoted to patient care, research and education. NCCN is dedicated to improving and facilitating quality, effective, equitable, and accessible cancer care so that all patients can live a better life. The NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology (NCCN Guidelines®) provide transparent, evidence-based, expert consensus recommendations for cancer treatment, prevention, and support services; they are the recognized standard for clinical guidance and policy in cancer management and the most comprehensive and frequently updated clinical practice guidelines available in all fields of medicine. the NCCN Guidelines for Patients® provide expert information on cancer treatment to inform and empower patients and caregivers, with support from the NCCN Foundation®. The NCCN is also progressing continuing education, global initiatives, Politicsand research collaboration and publication in oncology. Visit for more information and follow NCCN on Facebook @NCCNorg, Instagram @NCCNorg and Twitter @NCCN.

Media Contact:
Rachel Darwin
[email protected]

SOURCE Comprehensive National Cancer Control Network

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