What it’s like to be on a COVID vaccine trial – Part ii
So back in lockdown 1 I was rather bored like most of the country and saw a tweet asking for people to sign up for a potential vaccine study in certain postcodes. I happened to live in one of those postcodes so signed up and one medical later I taking part in Phase One/Two of the Oxford Vaccine trail.
I received my first injection back in late April/early May, and was due to be on a six month trail ending in early November. However a couple of weeks ago I received an email asking if I was willing to have a booster jab as initial results from the trail group who received two shots showed that it provoked a stronger immune reaction.
So, come last Tuesday, I was back at the Imperial Research Unit at Hammersmith Hospital, somewhere I’m becoming a little more familiar than with than I’d ever envisioned. Like my last few visits, it started with few generic health questions before taking my pulse, temperature and a blood test. I’d never had a blood test before April, yet at this point I lost count of the number I’ve had in the last six months.
Then once all that was sorted, I had the updated terms and conditions explained, along with explanations about the two pauses in the vaccine study. The nurse did a great job clearly explaining how these pauses were a regular occurrence in vaccine studies before injecting me. Mercifully this time there was only a fifteen minute observation period, rather than an hour, as I’d been an idiot and left my computer, which I intended to watch my lecture on during this time, up in Leamington Spa. Instead I spent the time chatting about the study with the nurse. He said that all things considered they should have enough data from the study by January/February to know if it is successful, if it isn’t halted again.
Fortunately other than a little drowsiness, I experienced no side effects. I have another four further appointments to monitor the vaccine over the next few months, with the next one being in three weeks time, alongside weekly online questionnaires to fill in. Thanks to all the nurses and doctors at the Imperial Research Unit for doing such a great job.