Release Date: 23-May-2013
Singapore has off late come to become the nucleus of clinical research activities in the Asia-Pacific region. The country is a natural hub for manufacturers and clinicians. It also possesses one of the best healthcare infrastructure networks in the entire region. According to the World Health Organization, Singapore’s infrastructure is the 6th best in the world.
It has been estimated that during the period 2010-2012, approximately 200 Clinical Trial Certificates were issued annually. It is most likely that this number would increase to 300 by the end of the year. A major proportion of these studies would be in the Phase 1 to 3 stage of drug development. Some of the most important therapeutic areas which would be focused in these trials would include oncology, clinical pharmacology, gastroenterology/ hepatology and cardiology. These areas represent the niche fields where Singapore has not yet completely built its medical expertise. The Singapore Good Clinical Practice (GCP) Guidelines were set up by the Ministry of Health in 1998. These guidelines ensure patient safety and the integrity of the resulting data.
The government’s favorable actions coupled with the presence of world-class, research-oriented hospitals and specialty centers have enabled the country to develop a strong base of clinical trial expertise and capabilities. The hospitals and institutes, such as the National University Hospital, Singapore General Hospital, Tan Tock Seng Hospital, National Cancer Centre, National Neuroscience Institute, National Heart Centre, Singapore Eye Research Institute and the Institute of Mental Health conduct their own medically and scientifically complex clinical trials. The conducting of trials at these institutions produces novel treatments to the patient population, which would otherwise not be available until the experimental treatments are approved. Additionally, the physicians and doctors who lead or participate in these trials gain knowledge about the latest medical advances.
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