Looking for quick cash? UK offers volunteers £4,500 to be deliberately infected with coronavirus
London, Feb. 18, 2021 (AltAfrica)-Volunteers in UK who are ready to be deliberately infected with virus which causes Covid-19 for scientific research will be paid around £4,500 in return for exposing themselves to the virus
The ‘human challenge trial’ will take place in the UK and involve an initial 17 days in quarantine then follow-ups for a year.
Ninety volunteers, aged between 18 to 30, will be given the smallest amount of virus needed to cause infection via drops in the nose in a very small volume of fluid – about a fifth of a millilitre.
They will have to have no previous history or symptoms of Covid-19, no underlying health conditions and no known adverse risk factors for Covid-19 such as diabetes or being overweight.
The volunteers have not yet been selected – so if you are interested, you can give details here.
The UK will be the first country to run a #COVID19 #HumanChallenge study.— Imperial College (@imperialcollege) February 17, 2021
The ethically approved study, sponsored by Imperial + backed by @beisgovuk, will offer insights into immune response and transmission of #coronavirus https://t.co/ERPKbiBPxL
Professor Sir Terence Stephenson, chairman of the Health Research Authority (HRA), defended paying the volunteers thousands of pounds to take part.
He said: ‘People are rewarded for being in those studies, or compensated.
‘The sum is about £4,500 but that covers the initial stay and follow-up.’
He added: “The initial stay involves quite an imposition on a young person – 17 days in quarantine and you cannot be visited by any member of your family or friend or relative.
‘For the first £1,500 for 17 days we’ve got something like £88 a day, which I don’t think anyone would sense was a ridiculous coercion or inducement.’
Experts hope the study will give doctors a greater understanding of the virus and help with vaccine and treatment development.
Chief Investigator Dr Chris Chiu, from the Department of Infectious Diseases at Imperial College London, said: ‘We are asking for volunteers aged between 18 and 30 to join this research endeavour to help us to understand how the virus infects people and how it passes so successfully between us. Our eventual aim is to quickly test which vaccines and treatments work best in beating this disease.’
The Government has invested £33.6 million in the first-of-its-kind study for this virus, due to start in weeks.
The strain of the virus volunteers will be infected with will initially be the original one circulating in the UK, rather than any of the new variants, although this could be changed as the study continues