Plymouth hospital’s coronavirus vaccine trial needs volunteers

Derriford Hospital in Plymouth needs 500 people to take part in a new coronavirus vaccine trial.

A Plymouth hospital is appealing for volunteers to take part in a trial for a new coronavirus vaccine.

Derriford Hospital is one of 17 sites across the UK testing the two-dose vaccine, which has been developed by Janssen Pharmaceutical Company.

Staff need 500 participants for the study, and have already had interest from more than 1,300 people.

Derriford Hospital's trial will test a vaccine which has been developed by Janssen Pharmaceutical Company.

But researchers say for the trial to be meaningful, they need people from all sorts of ages and backgrounds to apply - so are continuing their appeal for volunteers.

“It was just like any other vaccination I've had,” Peter, one of the volunteers taking part, said.

“There was no pain - I didn't even feel the needle going in.”

Another volunteer, Mary, said they applied because she wanted to do it “for the children”.

Peter and Mary are among the volunteers who have signed up for the vaccine trial.

“The quicker we volunteer and we're able to get it done, the quicker we'll find a solution to this problem,” she told ITV News West Country.

As part of the trial, participants will be given two injections two months apart.

They will be given either the trial drug or a placebo, and they will be monitored by researchers for the next two years.

Anyone over 18 can apply.

“I've worked in research since 2003 - so that's 17 years,” Catherine Pitman, who is a research nurse at the hospital, said.

Catherine Pitman is a research nurse at the hospital.

“For me personally, being involved in research and being on the forefront of hopefully bringing some positive news to everybody, I am so proud."

The purpose of the study is to find an effective vaccine against Covid-19.

For more information on the trial, or to apply, click here

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