Together, We are Making History

Clinical Researcher—December 2019 (Volume 33, Issue 10)


John P. Neal, CRCP


Historians like to use certain years as shorthand. For example, in American history, citing the years 1776, 1929, and 1945 immediately conjure up important images and turning points regarding independence, economic collapse, and a world war victory, respectively. It’s not my intention to be quite so dramatic in my final message as your outgoing ACRP Association Board of Trustees Chair, but I do think 2019 is going to go down as an important and very positive year in the history of ACRP.

In so many ways, your organization has taken the lead and set the pace in the advancement of clinical trial safety and efficacy by advocating new certifications and standards in the clinical trial workforce. Whether it’s through the exciting—and expanding—work of the Partners in Workforce Advancement or the Workforce Innovation Steering Committee, 2019 saw many new individual members and organizations join our shared quest to further professionalize the clinical trial industry.

Most importantly, ACRP has helped employers to recognize the value of certification for clinical trial personnel across the board. ACRP has produced and disseminated data in 2019 that show certification reduces turnover, improves performance, and generally speeds delivery of key drugs and devices to the patients who need them. It’s important work, and I know you share my pride in helping the effort.

Further, as Executive Director Jim Kremidas notes in his recent column looking back at ACRP’s productive year, in April we unveiled the ACRP Medical Device Professional certificate, or ACRP-MDP®. This subspecialty designation can be earned through successful completion of a 60-question multiple choice exam designed to validate clinical research professionals who have demonstrated knowledge in medical device trials. It’s another exciting example of how ACRP is addressing the needs of both members and their employers.

Finally, I’d like to take this opportunity to thank each of you for your help as I close out my term. I had the chance to interact with many of you at ACRP events throughout 2019. Each time, I was inspired by your enthusiasm and talent. It is always uplifting to spend time around you, and I look forward to remaining an active ACRP member for years to come.

John P. Neal, CRCP, is Founder and Chairman of PCRS Network, LLC, and the 2019 Chair of the Association Board of Trustees for ACRP.