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The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the development of decentralized clinical trials (DCT). DCT’s are an important and pragmatic method for assessing health outcomes yet comprise only a minority of clinical trials, and few published methodologies exist. In this report, we detail the operational components of COVID-OUT, a decentralized, multicenter, quadruple-blinded, randomized trial that rapidly delivered study drugs nation-wide. The trial examined three medications (metformin, ivermectin, and fluvoxamine) as outpatient treatment of SARS-CoV-2 for their effectiveness in preventing severe or long COVID-19. Decentralized strategies included HIPAA-compliant electronic screening and consenting, prepacking investigational product to accelerate delivery after randomization, and remotely confirming participant-reported outcomes. Of the 1417 individuals with the intention-to-treat sample, the remote nature of the study caused an additional 94 participants to not take any doses of study drug. Therefore, 1323 participants were in the modified intention-to-treat sample, which was the a priori primary study sample. Only 1.4% of participants were lost to follow-up. Decentralized strategies facilitated the successful completion of the COVID-OUT trial without any in-person contact by expediting intervention delivery, expanding trial access geographically, limiting contagion exposure, and making it easy for participants to complete follow-up visits. Remotely completed consent and follow-up facilitated enrollment.
Long-term sequelae of severe acute respiratory coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection may include increased incidence of diabetes. Here we describe the temporal relationship between new type 2 diabetes and SARS-CoV-2 infection in a nationwide database. We found that while the proportion of newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes increased during the acute period of SARS-CoV-2 infection, the mean proportion of new diabetes cases in the 6 months post-infection was about 83% lower than the 6 months preinfection. These results underscore the need for further investigation to understand the timing of new diabetes after COVID-19, etiology, screening, and treatment strategies.
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