Some of the research studies at the NIH Clinical Center involve promising new treatments that may directly benefit patients.
What Is a Clinical Trial?
A clinical trial (also clinical research) is a research study in which people participate as volunteers.
A research study is a scientific investigation to achieve a complete understanding of a topic.
Carefully conducted clinical trials are the fastest and safest way to find
- Treatments and medications that work in people
- Ways to improve health
There are strict rules for clinical trials, which are monitored by
- National Institutes of Health (NIH)
- Food and Drug Administration
Basic Facts About the Clinical Trials
- The trials are located in Bethesda, Maryland.
- Some trials are only for people in the local area, but most permit people from anywhere in the United States to enroll.
- Some travel costs may be covered.
- There is no cost for study-related medical care or medicines.
- People can be referred to a clinical trial by their personal physicians, or they can refer themselves.
- There may be some compensation for time and inconvenience.
Participants in clinical trials are
- Seen by a team of expert doctors, nurses, technicians, and support staff
- Often the first to receive promising new treatments before they become available in the community
- Helping others with the same disease—both today and in the future
Participants in clinical trials can
- Play a more active role in their own health care
- Potentially gain access to new research treatments before they are widely available
- Help others by contributing to greater medical knowledge
Read More About the Research
Learn more about the research conducted at NIAID to fight HIV and other emerging infectious diseases