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Associate member

The SCTO is an independent organisation and is based on a joint initiative of the Swiss National Science Foundation and the Swiss Academy of Medical Sciences.

As of 2017, the SCTO is a research infrastructure of national importance funded by the State Secretariat of Education, Research and Innovation and the Swiss National Science Foundation.


The SCTO Platforms have their own website:
Tools & Resources: Our new website for academic clinical research professionals

With our new, user-friendly website, our platforms’ practical tools and resources are even more accessible for your day-to-day work. The website will be continually updated and expanded with additional tools, so it’s worth visiting regularly!



Elena Porro, Ente Ospedaliero Cantonale (EOC), CTU-EOC Lugano


Safety online training

Patient safety and reporting issues in clinical research

Who is the training for?

Investigators and study staff members, including study nurses and coordinators, who are looking to consolidate or refresh their knowledge of patient safety and reporting issues in clinical research.


What does the training include?

The training offers two modules, both in English. They include case examples, a quiz, and a certificate of completion. The modules are:

  • Safety management in clinical trials with medicinal products, other clinical trials, and research projects not involving clinical trials

  • Safety management in clinical trials with medical devices

How does the registration work?

The training entirely free of cost and can be accessed through registration at More information is available at Safety Management in Clinical Research.

Who developed the training?

This training is the result of a collaboration between our Safety and Education platforms. It was prepared by the Clinical Trial Unit (CTU) Basel, in collaboration with all CTUs and the Swiss Group for Clinical Cancer Research (SAKK). Since March 2020, both modules are available online.

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Templates for safety reporting for investigator-initiated clinical trials

The Safety Platform adjusted their templates for investigator-initiated clinical trials (IICTs) falling under the Swiss Ordinance on Clinical Trials in Human Research (ClinO). The new serious adverse event (SAE) forms for all types of clinical trials are very comprehensive and aim to support sponsor-investigators. Two new templates are available:

  • Serious Adverse Event Report Form for Investigational Medicinal Products (IMP);
  • Serious Adverse Event Report Form for Other Clinical Trials.

In addition, the platform elaborated a template for Annual Safety Reports.

Because the templates are freely accessible to third parties outside the SCTO, it is important to follow the general instructions on the cover pages.

Questions or suggestions?

To connect with our experts or to offer feedback on these resources, please contact us at safety@scto.notexisting@nodomain.comch.

Our Safety Matrix below provides a handy, concise overview of safety experts within the Clinical Trial Units (CTUs) and the SAKK.


Safety in clinical research: finding the experts

Patient safety is one of the most important topics in clinical research and must be considered for processes and decisions throughout the development and conduct of a clinical trial or a research project. Bringing safety experts on board can lead to safer drugs and other medical therapies. 

The Safety Matrix of our safety platform provides a handy, concise overview of safety experts within the Clinical Trial Units (CTUs) and the Swiss Group for Clinical Cancer Research (SAKK).

This table of expertise is of interest and relevance to all CTU staff and to researchers engaged with investigator-initiated clinical trials (IICTs).

Here you can read About the Safety Matrix.

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Download & print

We suggest printing the Safety Matrix out on an A3 sheet of paper.

For more information about the platform, consult our fact sheet below.

Safety in brief

Keeping a bird’s-eye view on the risk–benefit ratio of a clinical research project

Safety in clinical research has a fundamental role: keeping the safety of patients in mind at all times. Safety professionals keep a bird’s-eye view on the risk–benefit ratio of a clinical research project, while never losing sight of the patient who is directly involved. The figure of the patient represents the many who are currently taking part, as well as all others who in future may benefit. Safety management starts well before patients are involved, by anticipating likely scenarios and implementing risk mitigating measures, and then following the process through to its conclusion. During trial conduct, the patient risk–benefit is continuously assessed and if necessary, should things deviate from the expected path, the safety team carries out safety measures immediately.  

Safety staff inform investigators and authorities about the occurrence of adverse events and its mitigating measures if need be, as well as patients so they can give informed consent to continued participation in the clinical research project.