Evidence based QA effectiveness research
We design and perform prospective studies or include the QA as a part of larger clinical trials to evaluate QA programs. An example of this research was a study conducted to improve contour consistency before trial activation. Another example was the continuous adaption of IGRT credentialing procedure from QA data collected and analyzed.
Secondary analysis of data collected through clinical trials
Large amount of data are collected through clinical trial processes, including multimodality imaging/treatment planning/verification digital data, associated pre- and post-treatment (quantitative) imaging data, and associated metadata, including outcomes. These data represent a potentially valuable resource for the research into quality assessment and other scientific investigations. It is recognized that the data will be the property of the primary group performing the study and that they must be engaged with respect to additional analyses.
Clinical trial quality assurance techniques research and tools development
Researches are conducted for effective QA techniques and methodologies, bringing expertise from NCI clinical trial network (NCTN) investigators and from other scientific disciplines. As part of this research direction, scientists and collaborators will develop and validate knowledge-based models for IMRT dose prediction based on “best available” knowledge and past experience, taking into account patient’s unique anatomy for IMRT planning quality assurance.
The QA workflow processes will also be evaluated constantly for efficiency and cost-effectiveness.