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Clinical trials

MultiCare Cancer Center has a number of national partnerships with other cooperative trial groups, as well as with pharmaceutical sponsored trials initiated directly from our collaboration with the U.S. Oncology Research Network. These relationships give us access to the nation's largest integrated cancer research platform with a broad range of industry trials and novel therapies for our patients.

Our physicians are members of national research groups regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the National Institutes of Health and the National Cancer Institute. The Institute Review Board is comprised of local medical personnel from other hospitals and lay people from Yakima who oversee the research studies open to the patients at MultiCare Cancer Center. We have clinical trials staff whose sole purpose is to search out and maintain trials that will benefit our patients.

Interested in clinical trials?

There have been great strides made in survival, quality of life and treatment of cancer patients as a direct result of clinical trials. By participating in clinical trials, patients play an active role in their own healthcare, gain access to new research treatments before they are widely available, and help others by contributing to medical research that may lead to the approval of drugs and procedures that will be used as future standards of care.

Clinical trials are completely voluntary, and patients have the right to withdraw from the study at any time during treatment or follow-up. Talk to your doctor or one of our research coordinators if you would like more information regarding clinical trials.

To learn more, call 509-574-3535 or email

Frequently asked questions

What is involved in the trial? Will there be more tests?

Your physician and the research team will inform you if you may need additional tests and/or blood draws as part of the study goals.

How long does the trial last?

Most studies will follow a patient through their treatment and then beyond for what's known as "survival" data. This could be anywhere from 3 to 15 years.

Will my treatment be delayed if I'm on a clinical trial?

Initial testing ensures that each study is appropriate for a patient before starting treatment. This ensures the best care for our patients and is critical to the success of the study.

Who pays for clinical trials?

The research component of your care is covered by the study. Routine care such as office visits, labs, scans and non-research medications would be covered by you or your insurance plan. We will work with your insurance carrier to make sure that participation in a trial is not excluded and your routine care items will be covered.

Who will see my information?

If you are enrolled in a clinical trial, you will be assigned a study number that links to your clinical trial information. Your health information is protected and kept confidential.

Will I get a placebo?

Sometimes it is necessary to compare a new treatment to no treatment when that is the standard of care. You will be told in advance if a study has a placebo component.

How are studies overseen/regulated?

Clinical trials are regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as well as Institutional Review Boards (IRBs). One of the roles of these entities is to make sure the risks involved in the trial are reasonable when compared to the possible benefits. They will follow the study from start to finish.

Will I know the results of the study?

Please let your research team know if you're interested in receiving information regarding the results of your trial. The results may not be known for several years.