Clinical trial management team during lockdown

Image of Rachel Dakin and Jill Williamson

June 2020: MND-SMART Trial Manager, Rachel Dakin, and Trial Management Administrator, Jill Williamson, give us a brief update on what they've been busy with during lockdown. 

Rachel Dakin

MND-SMART Trial Manager

“My role involves organising and overseeing all aspects of the MND-SMART trial. Unfortunately the trial is currently paused in line with local and national guidance. Although this is disappointing I am able to work at home and continue some parts of my role.

I have been working on reviewing our trial database, this system is used to collect all of the data from trial participants across the UK. As with all IT systems, improvements are constantly required so it is a good time to get all changes made and the database validated whilst no one is using it.

During this time I am also working on some audits of information we have previously collected to help us improve our trial website and the documents we give to all the centres across the UK. I am looking forward to the trial restarting but am glad there are plenty of meaningful tasks to do which will help things run more smoothly.

Finally, and most importantly, I’m ensuring all the systems and paperwork are in place to restart recruitment to the trial as soon as it is safe and legal for us to do so.”


Jill Williamson

MND-SMART Trial Management Administrator

“Before coronavirus I was monitoring the recruitment of new participants to MND-SMART at the Edinburgh trial centre, as well as helping other trial centres across the UK to progress towards opening too.

Although MND-SMART has paused recruitment and opening new trial centres during the current pandemic, there is still plenty of trial organisation to do behind the scenes!

I am still helping some research staff at various trial centres across the UK to complete the paperwork required to open their centres at some point in the future. I am reviewing trial documentation, such as staff training resources and guidance documents, to see if any improvements can be made. I am also making other helpful resources for staff at trial centres, based on the experiences and skills learned by the Edinburgh trial centre team so far.”

This article was published on: Wednesday, June 10, 2020