Ron Brookmeyer, dean of the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, co-authored a “New England Journal of Medicine” Sounding Board article advocating the development of a new approach to clinical trials conducted during pandemics such as COVID-19. 

The article’s authors — who serve as members of the World Health Organization R&D Blueprint — suggest a “core-protocol concept” to clinical trials, which could, for example, be applied across infectious disease outbreaks and allow for the addition of new team members over time. They also address the need for cooperation and early engagement with government officials, regulatory agencies and ethics committees, as well as coordination across funding agencies.

In his research, Brookmeyer uses the tools of the statistical, informational and mathematical sciences to address global public health problems. During a span of more than three decades, he has developed statistical methods that have helped address major global health challenges. Brookmeyer earned worldwide recognition for his work on predicting the magnitude of the impending HIV/AIDS epidemic, with work beginning in the mid-1980s.

“Creating a Framework for Conducting Randomized Clinical Trials during Disease Outbreaks” appears in the April 2, 2020 issue of the “New England Journal of Medicine.”