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Case study: 'I'm doing my bit in the pandemic by taking part in vaccine research'

'I'm doing my bit in the pandemic by taking part in vaccine research'

A COVID-19 vaccine trial is taking place across multiple sites in the UK, including the NIHR Patient Recruitment Centre, Leicester. Rachel gives us an update on her experience so far...

“I wanted to do my bit during the pandemic, so I signed up to take part in a vaccine study,” Rachel explains, adding that as someone who works in research and the NHS but is not frontline staff, taking part in a vaccine trial provided her with a way to be part of the enormous research effort in response to COVID-19.

Rachel is taking part in a trial to test the safety and effectiveness of a two-dose regimen of a new COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccine being tested uses a weakened common cold virus and a part of the COVID-19 virus to stimulate the immune system to later fight a real COVID-19 infection. Rachel joins a number of other participants in taking part at the PRC: Leicester, part of the Leicester General Hospital site.

“I thought that the Patient Recruitment Centre was lovely,” Rachel says after becoming one of the first participants to take part in a research study there. “It is an impressive facility where everything feels really clean and professional, and being in such a fantastic centre gives you confidence that everything will be efficient and effective.”

Rachel is keen to highlight her positive experience with staff during her research appointment. “At some point, everyone I dealt with thanked me for taking part, which really meant a lot to me,” she adds. “Staff used my first name and I felt that they used a really personal approach which made me feel like I was working with them to find answers to stop the spread of the virus.”

Rachel will now monitor any symptoms that she develops over the coming weeks via an online journal, before returning for her next appointment in the New Year. 

“I’m proud to be taking part in something that could make an enormous difference to people’s lives,” she adds. “I have confidence that I am in good hands and that my involvement will add to the research response to COVID-19.

“Even though there has been good news regarding vaccines we need to continue research to test the effectiveness of others, and I hope that many more people will consider joining me and supporting this vital research.”

To find out more about COVID-19 research and to register your interest in taking part, please visit