An Athens research facility has been chosen as one of 150 sites to test a potential vaccine against COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.
Tonya Pryor, director of research at North Alabama Research Center in Athens, said NARC and its sister site, Medical-Affiliated Research Center in Huntsville, were each chosen to conduct trials of a new drug from Pfizer that could serve as a COVID-19 vaccine.
The Center will be looking for more patients than in Phases 1 and 2, and it will serve as an outpatient study that focuses on "confirming and expanding the safety and effectiveness of the results shown in Phase 1 and Phase 2.
Patients will receive free medical care related to the study, including COVID-19 testing, antibody testing, EKGs, blood and lab work, physical assessments, and more.
To participate, patients must meet certain criteria, including no cancer in the last five years, no previous diagnosis of COVID-19, no autoimmune disorders or unmanaged pre-existing conditions, and being an adult under the age of 85.
Those who qualify will also be financially compensated. As an outpatient study, Pryor said patients could expect to spend two hours on their first visit.