Clinical Trials at RVH

A clinical trial is any investigation in human subjects intended to discover or verify the clinical, pharmacological, and/or other pharmacodynamic effects of investigational products, and/or to identify any adverse reactions, study absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion of the investigational products with the objective of ascertaining its safety and/or efficacy.

The scale of a clinical trial can vary greatly, from a single site with one investigator to hundreds of sites globally, each with their own local investigators. A single trial can take years to complete and relies on collaboration between participants and investigators.

All clinical trials that are conducted at RVH are reviewed and approved by the RVH Research Ethics Board or a Clinical Trials Ontario (CTO)-qualified research ethics board.

Clinical trials involving human participants are characterized by different phases, all of which are strictly regulated and require approval from a research ethics board. Clinical trial phases are classified as follows:

  • Phase 0 (Preclinical) – Testing in non-human subjects, often in a laboratory environment. RVH does not participate in this type of clinical trial

  • Phase I – Testing performed to evaluate safety in a small group of healthy volunteers or people with a specific disease (e.g., 20-100 participants). RVH does not participate in this type of clinical trial

  • Phase II – Testing performed to assess efficacy and side effects in a larger group of patients with a specific disease (e.g., 100-300 participants). RVH sometimes participates in this type of clinical trial

  • Phase III – Randomized control trial where treatment is tested blindly against a placebo or control group to assess efficacy, effectiveness, and safety in a large cohort of patients with a specific disease (e.g., 300-3000 participants). RVH commonly participates in this type of clinical trial

  • Phase IV – Clinical research that is conducted after a drug, device, or other intervention has been approved. RVH sometimes participates in this type of clinical trial


For more information about clinic trials and drug safety, please visit the following Government of Canada Information Page. A video about clinical trials from RVH's non-profit research partner, Network of Networks (N2), can be viewed at the bottom of this page. 


If you are have any questions about clinical trials at RVH, or think you may be eligible to participate in an ongoing trial, please contact the Clinical Trials Department or speak to your physician:


Clinical Trials Office
Simcoe Muskoka Regional Cancer Program, Room 3C095
201 Georgian Drive
Barrie, Ontario, L4M 6M2
705-728-9090 Ext. 66228

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Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre

Centre for Education & Research

201 Georgian Drive

Barrie, ON L4M 6M2