SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — Springfield hopes to become part of the solution in the fight against COVID-19.
In late October, research group QPS will host a coronavirus vaccine trial.
QPS will start its first of eight COVID-19 vaccine trials on Oct. 26.
Brenden Bourg says his team will vaccinate more than 100 volunteers.
“It’s a very exciting vaccine that we’re seeing and we’re looking forward to working on this with folks here in Springfield,” Bourg said. “We watch for anything post-dose that would occur such as irritation to the skin. We really take care of the volunteers and make sure that their safety is number one. It’s an environment that’s very controlled.”
QPS requires volunteers to stay at its clinic for 10 days.
“For stays some pay very small, $500 – $600,” Bourg said. “Some pay up to $8,00 – $9,000.”
Volunteers must have six check-ups afterwards.
The age range depends on the study but safety remains top priority.
“Everybody is tested before they come in, we still have to still space everybody out,” Bourg said. “We have a risk mitigation in place. We provide them pretty much everything they need while they’re in here.”
Such as catering, laundry, internet, TV’s and games.
And it’s not just research companies looking for a solution.
Local healthcare provider CoxHealth hasn’t done a vaccine trial yet but is working on a clinical trial with the National Institutes of Health.
Dr. Robin Trotman, Infectious Diseases at CoxHealth, says the clinical trial is for what’s called hyperimmune globulin.
“So that’s concentrated COVID antibodies,” Trotman said. “That’s a big deal. I’m working very hard to get us that trial because that’ll be a unique therapy that intuitively makes sense.”
Hyperimmune globulin is used for Hepatitis B, chicken pox and rabies.
“We have good experience using that,” Trotman said. “It’s fairly safe. We really need that for our patients.”
Mercy Hospital awaits two pending vaccine opportunities.
“Mercy Research leadership team has been actively researching, engaging in those inquiries,” said Kelle Laws, executive director of Mercy Research. “The vaccine trials that are available nationally are extremely competitive to be awarded.”
Mercy has completed six COVID-19 research opportunities since the pandemic began.
Fifteen research activities are underway, and seven opportunities are pending.