What does Dermico do?

Great question!  Dermico studies the skin and how products like makeup, cleansers, sunscreens, medical tapes, and topical drugs affect the skin, whether they work like they should, and how well they work compared to other, similar products.

What happens if I sign up?

Our staff will collect some basic demographic information and your contact information.  Once we have the information, we will not share it with anyone else.  When we are recruiting for a new research study, one of our recruiters may call you, explain the study to you, and see if you are interested in volunteering.

If I volunteer for a study will I get paid?

Yes!  All volunteers are paid an amount per study based on the time commitment, the number of times they have to travel to our lab, and how much stuff we will need them to do at home.  Every study pays different amounts which typically range from about $50 to about $600, but sometimes can be more than that.

What are the risks?

The most common risk is to have skin irritation or an allergic reaction due to an ingredient in the products.  This risk is similar to introducing any new product to your skin, such as trying a new moisturizer or new brand of bandage.  For this reason, it is important that you are honest with us regarding your history with topical products and whether you know you are sensitive or allergic to anything specific.  During the informed consent process you will be able to review a list of ingredients in the products and someone will explain to you other risks which may exist depending on the study.

What is “the informed consent process”?

After you’ve spoken to a recruiter, if you are interested in signing up for a study, you will meet with a staff member (remotely whenever possible using a telemedicine platform), and they will explain the study to you in much greater detail.  This will include an explanation of the purpose of the study, how long your participation will be needed, how many visits you’ll make, about how long each visit will be, everything we will do or need you to do at each visit, everything we will need you to do (and often not do) between visits or prior to a visit, all of the known possible risks and benefits of participation, the compensation, and who to contact if you have any additional questions or issues.  If you still agree to participate, you and the staff member will each sign the informed consent document and you will be given a copy.  The staff member may also need to collect some personal health information.  This will always be kept confidential and you will also be provided with a HIPAA statement explaining how the information might be used.

Who will see my personal information and health information?

Your information will be held securely on encrypted Dermico servers and de-identified demographic and personal health information will be shared with the companies that hire us and independent review boards that approve our study protocols. De-identified information means that it will not include information which can be personally identify you.  Records of your participation in this study will be held confidential so far as permitted by law.   However, your study records as well as your personal health information may be inspected at Dermico’s facility by the companies that hire us and/or by regulatory authorities (e.g. the Food and Drug Administration).  These reviews are done to check on the quality of the study.  During the inspection there might be certain circumstances that copies of your records may be made, which may have your name on them. 

What kind of personal health information will I be asked to share?

The most common personal health information we request is your history of medical conditions and prescriptions.  In most cases, this is to ensure your safety so that a product we are testing doesn’t interact with a medication you may be taking.  In some cases, this is because the medication you may be taking or condition you may have could interfere with the accuracy of the study results.   

What if something changes and I don’t want to continue a study?

You are welcome to withdrawal from a study at any time.  You will be compensated for the visits you’ve completed at that time.