Torch Recruit receives investment from The University of Melbourne and Western Health

A new clinical tool helping doctors automatically identify eligible patients for clinical trials and improve clinical trial participant diversity has been created by Torch Recruit, founded by University of Melbourne Associate Professor Jo-Anne Manski-Nankervis.

Torch Recruit was developed in the University of Melbourne Department of General Practice to improve the rates and diversity of patients enrolled in clinical trials vital for developing new medical treatments. Traditionally, recruiting participants to clinical trials takes many months and more than 80 per cent of trials fail to enroll enough patients.

Western Health and the University have committed $250,000 each in pre-seed investment funding for business development and expansion of the network of general practices working with Torch Recruit.

Professor Manksi-Nankervis said: “Recruiting for clinical trials is a massive problem. We saw an opportunity to address it by bringing more trials to the community, including regional and rural Australia. This strategy will address the delays that can result from not being able to translate research into practice if you’re not recruiting patients on time.

"Australia is an attractive venue for clinical trials and this is a growth area. If we are attracting more trials, then we need to ensure we can deliver on recruitment. We see ourselves as playing a key role in providing infrastructure to support clinical trial recruitment in community settings, which is where the majority of Australians receive their medical care."

If you’d like to learn more about joining the Torch Recruit network of general practices, please contact the team -