CORONAVIRUS

How to volunteer for a U.S. coronavirus vaccine study

Tens of thousands of volunteers in he U.S. will be required for four upcoming Phase III trials for potential coronavirus vaccines.

How to volunteer for a coronavirus vaccine study
Jessica Christian / Polaris

With four large coronavirus vaccine studies expected to start this summer and fall, a new website  coronaviruspreventionnetwork.org – was launched earlier this month which allows people in the U.S. to register to take part in the Phase III clinical trials.

Those interested in volunteering must fill out a questionnaire which is aimed at determining how likely they are to contract the coronavirus, with questions focusing on race, occupation and how many people they’re exposed to on a regular basis. Approval or rejection for the trial will be based on answers given in the questionnaire.

The trials will put an emphasis on recruiting volunteers from areas that have been worst affected by Covid-19. 

More than 100 sites will be set up in the United States and abroad. After registering on the website, information will be sent to the study site closest to you.

A vaccine developed by Moderna, a Massachusetts biotech company, is expected to be the first to be tested in a large trial. There will be between 10,000 and 30,000 volunteers for this first trial, half of which will be given the vaccine, while the other half will receive placebos.

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U.S. coronavirus vaccine triakls: what volunteers can expect

Volunteers will be administered two injections spaced a month apart and must attend seven appointments over a two-year period to have blood and nose swab test. They must keep a diary of symptoms over the same time period and be available for weekly check-in phone calls.

“Volunteers will not be exposed to the SARS-CoV-2 virus as part of the study. These are studies of preventive vaccines that we hope will keep people healthy,” according to the website.

“If you become infected with SARS-CoV-2 and become ill with COVID-19, the study staff will work with you to make sure you get the care that you need.”

In total, tens of thousands of volunteers will be required for the four Phase III trials. So if you are interested in volunteering, head over to the website to fill out the questionnaire.