Lightship, Inc. Market Research Confirms Patients’ Interest in Direct-to-Patient Clinical Trial Offering Amidst COVID-19 Pandemic

May 29, 2020

LOS ANGELES–(BUSINESS WIRE)–May 29, 2020–Lightship, a global direct-to-patient clinical trial company, announced today the results of a nationwide market research survey, designed to capture patients’ opinions surrounding clinical trial participation during the COVID-19 pandemic. The results indicated that the option to participate in clinical research from home significantly offsets patients’ concerns around virus transmission. The findings reinforce market forecasts that predicted a rapid uptick in direct-to-patient models, which increase patient access, lower costs, and shorten timelines in clinical trials.

Lightship’s Design team, led by Samantha Eells, deployed a national patient insight survey in late April 2020 to better understand how concern over COVID-19 transmission affected patients’ day-to-day activities and behaviors, and in what way their concerns changed patients’ willingness to participate in clinical research.

Lightship surveyed 940 adults across the United States through direct digital marketing channels, asking them how the coronavirus pandemic has affected their personal lives, habits, and their decision-making related to health and wellbeing. Nearly all respondents (94%) reported being under stay at home orders and 85% reported their general wellbeing as affected by COVID-19 to various degrees. Furthermore, 72% of the respondents without a COVID-19 diagnosis reported being “very” or “somewhat” concerned about getting sick or becoming infected with COVID-19.

In the midst of these concerns, 71% of the respondents indicated that they would consider taking part in a clinical research study however, only approximately one quarter (28%) of patients stated that they would be comfortable going into a clinic or hospital to participate in a clinical trial due to concerns about exposure to COVID-19. In contrast, over two-thirds (67%) expressed comfort with the idea of a research nurse visiting them at home or with the research visit being conducted via telemedicine (69%). Additionally, among the respondents who indicated a lack of interest in taking part in clinical research, 40% reported that if the research were to take part from home with no visits to a clinic, they would re-consider their interest in participating.

With rising concerns about potential for SARS COV-2 transmission, medical research that is not directly related to coronavirus has ground to a halt, with multiple academic institutions and pharmaceutical industry leaders slowing or completely stopping their clinical trial activities. “This makes way for a tremendous opportunity for Lightship,” states Eells. “We are partnering with leading sponsors to provide end-to-end solutions for patients to reduce the burden of clinical trial participation.”

Front line physicians have already found ways to help care for their patients through telemedicine platforms, and Lightship has been at the forefront of making this possible in clinical trials, supporting expanded access of clinical research to greater patient populations, expediting research timelines, and facilitating delivery of new medications to market.

About Lightship

Lightship is the premier provider of enterprise level, direct-to-patient clinical trial solutions. Engaging patients at home – from recruitment through study completion – Lightship eliminates the hurdles and inefficiencies of traditional approaches. Lightship is backed by Khosla Ventures, McKesson Ventures, Define Ventures, Brook Byers, and Marc Benioff. Learn more about us at

CONTACT: Brian Lovett
Lightship, Inc.