In the medical research field, volunteers are critical to learning more about the human body and how it works, the development of new medications and treatments, and the cause and ultimate cure of diseases and conditions through clinical trials. Clinical trials are experiments that use human volunteers to see whether a drug is effective and what side effects it may cause. In the U.S., the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requires that medications be safe and effective before they are made available to the general population. Several phases of research, studies, and trials involving human volunteers are part of this process. Read “From Fish to Pharmacies: A story of drug development” on the FDA’s website for an illustration of how a new drug is brought to market.
Meridien Research conducts a wide variety of clinical trials in all phases of research, and requires volunteers to complete each trial. Volunteers of both genders, all races and ethnicities, all ages—including children—and those who are healthy, have been diagnosed with a certain condition, or who are taking a specific medication are needed for studies. For this reason, we developed our Friends & Family Program, a referral program that rewards those who help get others interested in volunteering. For each person referred to Meridien Research who volunteers for a study, participants in the referral program are rewarded $25*. Further, there is no limit to the number of rewards someone may earn! It’s a great way to pocket a little extra
cash, at no risk.
According to the most recent economic news release by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, “62.6 million people volunteered through or for an organization at least once between September 2014 and September 2015,” (most recent data available). The Corporation for National & Community Service further relates this to 7.9 billion hours of service and an estimated $184 billion of service contributed. If you haven’t volunteered personally, it’s highly likely that you’ve been served by one or have a friend or family member who has.
Per the National Institutes of Health (NIH), “groundbreaking scientific advances in the present and the past were possible only because of participation of volunteers, both healthy and those with an illness, in clinical research…As research opens new doors to finding ways to diagnose, prevent, treat, or cure disease and disability, clinical trial participation is essential to help us find the answers.” The NIH website offers volunteer stories to help others decide whether or not to volunteer.
Volunteer Jenny states, “I participated…because my mom has type 1 diabetes. Although I decided to participate to help the scientists learn more about my mom’s condition, it ended up having a big benefit for me as well.”
Healthy volunteer Melanie states, “Why would anyone want to get into a clinical trial? I’m sure the answer is different for everybody. I feel so lucky to be healthy. I had a sister who died of cancer, so I believe it is very important for healthy people to help. We have a role to play in helping find new, more effective treatments that can save lives. What could be better than that?” Visit the website here for more stories.
There are many reasons why individuals may or may not have volunteered for a clinical research study, but the outcome is clear: without volunteers, clinical studies cannot proceed.
And without the studies, advancements cannot take place. Check out these articles for more information on participating in a study, what that means, and the impact it can have:
Why You May Have Never Participated In A Clinical Research Study—And 4 Reasons Why You Should
Why Should You Participate in a Clinical Trial?
Medical Research Plays a Role in Public Health
Six Reasons Why You Should Participate in a Clinical Trial
Would You Be a ‘Guinea Pig’ if You Participate in a Medical Research Study?
Five Reasons to Participate in a Medical Research Study
The Benefits of Pharmaceutical Research
Meridien Research conducts medical research studies at our six Central Florida clinics—Bradenton, Lakeland, Maitland, Spring Hill, St. Petersburg, and Tampa—and needs volunteers every day! Qualified study participants receive study-related care and medication at no cost, and may also receive compensation for time and travel. No medical insurance is required. To make a referral, or for more information on currently enrolling studies or to see if you or someone you know may qualify to participate, please contact us today at 1-888-777-8839 or visit our study pages.
*Subject may not be referred more than one time. Subjects may not refer each other. The referred subject must have completed a screening before a $25 gift card is given to the referring study participant. Subjects currently participating in a study are not eligible to be referred by someone. In the event that a subject is referred by multiple people, the first person who referred will receive payment. Eligibility will be tracked by Meridien Research. Meridien Research reserves the right to revise or eliminate this program at any time without notice.