Early Feasibility Studies for Cardiovascular Devices in the United States: JACC State-of-the-Art Review

David R. Holmes, Andrew A. Farb, Robert “Chip” Hance, Martin B. Leon, Pamela Goldberg, Bram D. Zuckerman, Aaron V. Kaplan, Liliana Rincon-Gonzalez, Jon Hunt, Jaime Walkowiak, Michael J. Mack

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


The development of technology to treat unmet clinical patient needs in the United States has been an important focus for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the 2016 Congressional 21st Century Cures Act. In response, a program of early feasibility studies (EFS) has been developed. One of the important issues has been the outmigration of the development and testing of medical devices from the United States. The EFS committee has developed and implemented processes to address issues to develop strategies for early treatment of these patient groups. Initial implementation of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration EFS program has been successful, but residual significant problems have hindered the opportunity to take full advantage of the program. These include delays in gaining Institutional Review Board approval, timeliness of budget and contractual negotiations, and lack of access to and enrollment of study subjects. This paper reviews improvements that have been made to the U.S. EFS ecosystem and outlines potential approaches to address remaining impediments to program success.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2786-2794
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the American College of Cardiology
Issue number23
StatePublished - Dec 8 2020


  • Congressional 21st Century Cures Act
  • IRB delays
  • early feasibility studies
  • study reimbursement
  • unmet clinical needs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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