Velocity Clinical Research acquires TrierHealth

Facilitate greater patient recruitment into clinical research globally, speeding up drug development

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Raghu Punnamraju, chief technology officer at Velocity clinical research, invests in Indian tech, acquires TrierHealth. Photo prnewswire

US-based Velocity Clinical Research (‘Velocity’), fully integrated clinical site organization, today announces its acquisition of TrierHealth, a digital clinical trials platform whose research and development team operates out of Hyderabad, India, to develop patient-focused technology. TrierHealth’s founder, Raghu Punnamraju, will become Velocity’s chief technology officer.

The investment in Indian clinical technology expertize in Hyderabad comes amid the clinical trials sector’s move towards decentralised trials. Velocity operates 30 locations across the US and will expand to other regions this year, adopting a hybrid solution of both brick-and-mortar sites plus technology elements to facilitate greater patient recruitment into clinical research globally, speeding up drug development.

In the past 12 months, Velocity has randomized 25,000 patients into phase II and III studies in the US Velocity will now embark on an aggressive recruitment drive for clinical technology talent in Hyderabad, critical to the company’s growth as a global clinical trials player.

Velocity, now with its acquired technical capability, will develop patient-focused tech to increase patient engagement amongst its database of 500,000 patients, increasing the frequency of people taking part in multiple studies.

Dr G Paul Evans, chief executive and president of Velocity Clinical Research, said, “We’re building a global community of patients who are engaged, advocate for participation in clinical research, and actively take part in multiple studies. We looked to Hyderabad for its well-known reputation as a hub for technology development within Life Sciences. It has a qualified workforce with the expertise we are looking for that will allow us to scale the team in line with our ambitious growth objectives.

“The experience of the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent race to find a vaccine demonstrated there is a need for more user-friendly technology applications that enable more people to participate in clinical research. Velocity, together with the expertise acquired from TrierHealth, is setting a new standard of integration for the research site industry to better recruit and retain patients into clinical research.”

The acquisition of TrierHealth means Velocity can develop applications that harness the power of AI and data science to improve clinical research. The acquisition comes 18 months after collaborating with TrierHealth to build a patient-focused platform to support decentralized visits. The research and development team, based in Hyderabad, will now expand and focus on patient recruitment and retention applications.

Raghu Punnamraju, Velocity’s new chief technology officer, said, “Technology touches every part of our lives and clinical research is no different. As we increasingly move towards decentralised clinical research, the tech needs to improve. We are setting the standard for user-oriented technology that is as easy to use as Amazon.

“Government in Hyderabad has taken several measures to establish a sustained ecosystem for life sciences, including academia, infrastructure, and employment. Consequently, Hyderabad’s tech industry has always stayed on top of the latest innovations. The ecosystem has talent in abundance and makes it easy for organizations to establish their workforce and so I am delighted to be actively building out the core capabilities of our team in Hyderabad.”

Raghu Punnamraju brings extensive software and industry experience, including eight years with Parexel Informatics, and turns at Intermountain Healthcare in Utah, and GE Healthcare. Velocity will embark on a recruitment drive in Hyderabad for developer expertise as it expands its capabilities.

Velocity was the only US company to recruit patients to all operation warp speed Covid-19 vaccine trials, plus Pfizer, randomizing 10% of all volunteers in the US to Covid-19 studies.

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