From The Tribune staff reports
BIRMINGHAM — Ascension St. Vincent’s is recruiting for a COVID-19 vaccine clinical research trial. The study will evaluate the safety and effectiveness of mRNA-1273, a vaccine candidate against COVID-19.
Sponsored by Moderna, the COVE Study is looking for healthy individuals ages 19 or older in high-risk populations, including those age 65 and older, those who are at higher risk for COVID-19, and essential workers in close contact with potentially infected persons.
“We are excited and hopeful as we begin participating in the COVE Study, understanding this could be one of the most important and impactful clinical research studies in our lifetime,” said Dr. Timothy Bode, Ascension St. Vincent’s Chief Clinical Officer. “Ascension St. Vincent’s is proud to be at the forefront of research for this trial, which could potentially bring the world one step closer to ending this global health crisis.”
The Phase 3 study will evaluate if mRNA-1273 boosts the immune system to produce enough antibodies against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, so it does not cause illness in case of infection. Ascension St. Vincent’s is one of 89 research sites across the country participating in the COVE Study.
To be eligible for the study, healthy volunteers must be 19 years of age and older with no known history of SARS-CoV-2 infection or previous participation in an investigational coronavirus vaccine. Within this population, Ascension St. Vincent’s is especially looking for candidates whose locations or circumstances put them at higher risk of exposure to the virus, including:
- Individuals age 65 and older
- Essential workers in close contact with potentially infected persons, including, but not limited to, healthcare and hospital workers, first responders, transit employees, institutional residents or workers, factory employees, and teachers and students
- Those at high risk for COVID-19
If a person is eligible and decides to participate, the research staff at Ascension St. Vincent’s will randomize patients to receive either the mRNA-1273 vaccine or a matching placebo. The total length of participation is 25 months and includes approximately seven visits to the clinic and 24 phone calls.
Those who are interested in learning more can visit healthcare.ascension.org/Vaccine-Trial-AL for more information and to complete a health questionnaire.
About Ascension St. Vincent’s
In Birmingham, Alabama, Ascension St. Vincent’s operates five hospitals in addition to several healthcare facilities and employs more than 4,800 associates. Across the region, Ascension St. Vincent’s provided more than $57.8 million in community benefit and care of persons living in poverty in fiscal year 2016. Serving Birmingham for over 118 years, Ascension is a faith-based healthcare organization committed to delivering compassionate, personalized care to all, with special attention to persons living in poverty and those most vulnerable.
Ascension is one of the leading non-profit and Catholic health systems in the U.S., operating 2,600 sites of care – including 151 hospitals and more than 50 senior living facilities – in 21 states and the District of Columbia. Visit www.healthcare.ascension.org.