proDERM statement in relation to Covid-19
Schenefeld, March 19, 2020
The increasing, extremely dynamic spread of the corona virus has global effects on our life and the economy. Like everyone we experience extreme disruption by this development.
We have already in the very early phase of this Pandemic taken immediate measures to safeguard the health of study participants, employees and visitors, most importantly uplifting hygiene procedures, cancelling meetings and travel and sending part of the staff into home-office.
We are currently reassessing on a daily basis if and how we can continue performing clinical studies in accordance with government guidelines and the precautionary and hygienic measures we have taken (see attachment). Our number one priority has been and still is to finalize those ongoing studies. To make that happen, we had to postpone most studies that had not yet started, especially those with high volunteer numbers. This is to ensure the need for keeping the distance between people and reducing the number of contact points.
We have contacted all Sponsors whose studies are directly affected. If we have forgotten to contact you, please accept our sincere apologies. This was not out of neglect or disrespect but solely due to our capacity. 3 weeks ago we were running on maximum capacity. Within a week we needed to arrange for a coordinated almost shutdown. This has been an exhausting exercise. But it was not only absolutely necessary but as of today successful.
What is the current status? So far all ongoing projects continue almost as planned. Everyone who possibly can is in home-office and our IT manages this manifold increase in VPN-traffic thanks to an excellent infrastructure, broadband internet and last but not least an excellent and dedicated IT-Team.
With all these modifications and safety precautions we now slowly start looking ahead. As of today it is not foreseeable when we can re-start new study activities. We will continue to evaluate the situation very carefully and react in a responsible way.
But most importantly:
- No one of our team or study participants has yet been infected thanks to early taken safety measures and a great portion of luck
- The majority of study participants continues to come to their scheduled study visits
- The spirit of the proDERM-Team is wonderful. The whole team is motivated and works unimaginably hard to do whatever they can do to assure highest quality even in times of crisis
- We are very confident to manage this crisis and grow stronger
- We are using some of our ‘free time’ to advance some long-overdue projects
At the same time, we would like to encourage you to look ahead with us and to discuss your current and future study needs with us. Now is the time to plan for re-starting the economy once this worldwide shutdown is over.
Our thoughts are with you, your families and colleagues. We are all in this together and we will all manage this together.