I conclude that my research studies begin the ending phases of the study during the latter parts of the middle phases.

Patient advisors should expect, that there may not be many “different” activities as data build up, but there probably will be many activities such as tying together of loose ends, before the final single wrap up date. What questions or challenges remain? My patient-researcher journeys through the ending phases of most of my research studies are still in progress at this writing. So my end comments in this column are more speculative and may vary from report to report.

I have found myself quite attentive to what happens to the patients who also are at the endpoint of the study. When patients suffer from the affliction which is being studied, for example, I seek out data about their reactions. If a drug is being studied, will patients remain on that drug when the study ends? Is it safe to continue treatment according to the study guidelines? Has the public been given a chance to scrutinize the findings before and after the end of the study? Patient partner researchers should be alert for where these questions are leading.

In the ending phases of the study, or right from the middle, statisticians may be computing whether the differences they worked with are significant. Draft analyses are being prepared. Results are being worked on by everyone in the group. Final copies of reports and considerations for publication are being prepared. As a writer, I find everything interesting that is being communicated to, from, and about team members.

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