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CRN vs. CRC: What are the outcomes?

  • 09 Nov 2018 11:38 AM
    Message # 6896657

    Hello everyone!  I was so pleased to meet CRNs from across the world at our conference and learn about the great work we are all doing.

    However, my institution is currently going through some major changes to our structure and our CRNs are in need of truly advocating for the value an RN brings to the role.  I am currently performing a literature review for the PICO: In (non-oncology) clinical research studies, how does a nurse as coordinator compared to a non-clinical coordinator affect patient and study outcomes?

    I'm curious how other research institutes (non-oncology) are staffed and what the responsibilities of CRNs versus research coordinators are.  Also, does anyone have a staffing plan for their research institutes you'd be able/willing to share?

  • 10 Nov 2018 12:22 PM
    Reply # 6898397 on 6896657

    This is a big issue and a trend apparently.  Some of it appears to be about cost, other reasons is that CCCs are starting to shift to CRC (without healthcare license or nursing) and so the wave is beginning.  ONS has released new competencies for CRNs (updated from their 2010 competencies).  A great study would be to look at this across cancer centers.  One of our members, Michelle Purdom did some research about CRN roles across cancers centers.  I think this would be an interesting study and easy to do.  

    In the past year, I was called from a group of RNs at one institution (UAB) who had a new CCC Director (from Harvard) who changed to a model of CRC (not nurse) in a system that had been mostly CRN.  Said it worked great at Harvard . . . . and so the dominoes began to fall.

    I wonder if it is all about money?  Have unions become so successful in achieving better salaries for hospital RNs that the CRN positions can't afford to pay them?  Would this problem improve if we have a few sessions with our industry and gov't sponsors to help them realize that the study budget system is outdated?  Smaller biotechs are sponsoring more studies- and the sites may accept a less than ideal budget because of the need to be involved in the new innovative compounds/biologics.  

    I think the issue is multifactorial, but a position paper or OP ED with some data on the trends across cancer centers might be interesting.

    Thinking about IACRN's policy initiatives, this is the sort of thing that the congress needs to see to improve funding to the Institutes!

    Carolynn Jones   jones.5342@osu.edu

  • 18 Jan 2019 7:03 PM
    Reply # 7009389 on 6896657

    Hello there,

    I'm late to the discussion. But we use primarily non RN coordinators at our institution. I would love to see this discussion go further. I'd like to look at developing a "partnership" approach for our non-nurse colleagues and mentoring programs to encourage more nursing involvement at our sight. I'd love to share thoughts on this. Lila

  • 22 Jan 2019 8:54 AM
    Reply # 7014897 on 6896657

    Hi Lila,

    Thanks for the response.  Can you tell me what type of research organization you work for (i.e. hospital, private research facility, academic medical center, etc.)?  Also, do you work in oncology or general clinical research?  

    We have definitely seen a decline in the quality of care provided to our patients/subjects when we allow unlicensed CRCs for our clinical studies versus using nurses.  

    Attached, you can find some of the literature that I've been collected over the past few years.  If anyone has any other articles that they're using to help with the argument for RNs over unlicensed, please share.

    Thank you,


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