By Tatiana Zaituni
Earlier this week, the University of Bradford started one of the world’s first mass COVID-19 vaccine trials.
The University of Bradford is one of 16 centres to begin running trials.
The professor leading this study, Dr Dinesh Saralaya, is urging more BAME volunteers to sign up.
US biotechnology company, Novavax, is working with Bradford Institute for Health Research (BIHR) and part of the Bradford Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust (BTHFT) at the University’s Digital Health Enterprise Zone (DHEZ).
This trial will involve 500 recruits. 50 people will receive the vaccine each day. Another 600 will go through this process at a site in Leeds.
During the trial period, volunteers will be given two doses of vaccine, the initial will be on the first day, and the other on day 21. They will be monitored for the next 12 months.
Visiting Honorary Professor at the University of Bradford, Dr Dinesh Saralaya, who is a Consultant Respiratory Physician at BTHFT, said: “This is great news for Bradford, and it is of great prestige that we are using the University.
A total of 10 000 will take part in the trial ‘phase 3’, including other sites across the country.
“This is the first mass COVID vaccine trial in West Yorkshire, and we will be one of the first centres of 16 to be initiated.”
He continued: “We have seen more than 2,300 people sign up as volunteers, but only a small proportion of those are from black, Asian, minority ethnic (BAME) backgrounds.”
Dr Saralaya who described the first phase trial as ‘disappointing’ and ‘very worrying’ after only 3% were of BAME volunteers.
Despite this, he expressed optimism as “We are making great efforts to try and recruit more people from these groups and would like to appeal for more to sign up.”
University of Bradford Vice-Chancellor, Professor Shirley Congdon, stated: “The University is delighted to be supporting the BIHR by hosting their COVID vaccine trials.
“This is an important collaboration between the University’s DHEZ and BIHR that demonstrates the strength of partnership with the NHS locally and shows the benefits that can come when organisations work together to make the best use of their combined assets.”
People can volunteer here. All those taking part must be over 18 and not have had Covid-19 for the vaccine to be effective.
Further vaccine trials are expected to begin in November.
6 days ago
Today KLTV is looking back on some of our legacy videos. Our 2014 production, Food Banks in Kirklees, remains as relevant as ever. It discusses important issues such as poverty in Kirklees, the need for food banks, personal stories, and shows the people that have gone the extra mile to help out in the community.
Approximately 1.9 million people used a food bank in the UK in 2019/20, which is around 300 thousand more than the previous year.
According to The Trussell Trust’s midyear stats they gave out, on average, 2,600 parcels to children every day in the first six months of the pandemic in the UK. They are also expecting this winter to be their networks busiest time ever.
Now is an apt time to reflect on our community in Kirklees and how we can continue helping each over and moving forward as a community.
Those speaking in the 2014 production show the harsh reality of needing food banks and asks questions of ‘Why do we need food banks?’ and ‘What needs to change?’, but continues to show what we can achieve when communities come together.
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