A Canadian Prospective Study of Linkage of Randomized Clinical Trial to Cancer and Mortality Registry Data Journal Articles uri icon

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  • In a prospective study, we sought to determine acceptability of linkage of administrative and clinical trial data among Canadian patients and Research Ethics Boards (REBs). The goal is to develop a more harmonized approach to data, with potential to improve clinical trial conduct through enhanced data quality collected at reduced cost and inconvenience for patients. On completion of the original LY.12 randomized clinical trial in lymphoma (NCT00078949), participants were invited to enrol in the Long-term Innovative Follow-up Extension (LIFE) component. Those consenting to do so provided comprehensive identifying information to facilitate linkage with their administrative data. We prospectively designed a global assessment of this innovative approach to clinical trial follow-up including rates of REB approval and patient consent. The pre-specified benchmark for patient acceptability was 80%. Of 16 REBs who reviewed the research protocol, 14 (89%) provided approval; two in Quebec declined due to small patient numbers. Of 140 patients invited to participate, 115 (82%, 95% CI 76 to 88%) from across 9 Canadian provinces provided consent and their full name, date of birth, health insurance number and postal code to facilitate linkage with their administrative data for long-term follow-up. Linkage of clinical trial and administrative data is feasible and acceptable. Further collaborative work including many stakeholders is required to develop an optimized secure approach to research. A more coordinated national approach to health data could facilitate more rapid testing and identification of new effective treatments across multiple jurisdictions and diseases from diabetes to COVID-19.


  • Hay, Annette E
  • Mittmann, Nicole
  • Crump, Michael
  • Cheung, Matthew C
  • Sleeth, Jessica
  • Needham, Judy
  • Broekhoven, Mike
  • Djurfeldt, Marina
  • Shepherd, Lois E
  • Meyer, Ralph
  • Chen, Bingshu E
  • Pater, Joseph L

publication date

  • March 8, 2021