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Dorset joins search for COVID-19 vaccine

Dorset joins search for COVID-19 vaccine

NHS organisations across Dorset are working with the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) to play their part in the search for a COVID-19 vaccine, with the opening of a key vaccine trial in Bournemouth.

The trial, taking place in Dorset’s new research hub at Royal Bournemouth Hospital (RBH), sees the people of Dorset come together with their NHS to find a way out of the coronavirus pandemic.

Over 500 Dorset residents will take part, joining 10,000 volunteers across the UK in helping researchers to understand how well the candidate vaccine protects against coronavirus infection across a wide range of people.

The researchers leading trials are particularly keen to make sure the vaccine protects those most at risk of severe COVID-19, calling on those over 65, from a Black, Asian, and minority ethnic (BAME) background and people with pre-existing health conditions to get involved.

Dr Patrick Moore, a Dorset GP and the local investigator of the study, said: “This important research will help us to find a safe and effective vaccine for COVID-19, to protect us all more quickly and end the pandemic sooner. 

“To help us make sure that any vaccine developed will work for everyone, we need people aged 18-84 from all backgrounds, to take part in the study.

“In Dorset, we are particularly looking for people in the most at risk COVID-19 groups. Those with stable, pre-existing health conditions, those over 65 years old and those from Black or Asian ethnic backgrounds.

“Our county is playing a key part in the global search for a COVID-19 vaccine, and we’d like to thank the people of Dorset for coming together with the NHS to find a way out of this pandemic.

“This vaccine is one of six in national trials all aimed at getting an effective vaccine, faster. We in the NHS are calling on those interested in taking part in this study, or future studies, to sign up via the NHS COVID-19 Vaccine Research Registry, created to help the people across the country take part in this search over the coming months.”

Those wanting to be contacted about this study, and future studies, can sign up to the NHS COVID-19 Vaccine Research Registry at www.nhs.uk/researchcontact.