Coronavirus Vaccine Research

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Vaccines are the most effective way to prevent infectious diseases.

They’re designed so they do not give people the infection they’re protecting against.

Research into vaccines is the only way to find out which vaccines will work. Researchers need people to take part in their studies so they can find out which possible new vaccine works best.


What’s involved in vaccine studies?

Vaccines are tested to make sure they’re safe before being tested in people. If you take part in a vaccine study, you may or may not be offered the vaccine.

You’ll need to visit the hospital, or other research site, a few times over 6 to 12 months.

At these visits, you’ll usually:

  • be told about the research study
  • have the chance to ask any questions
  • have blood tests
  • Between visits, you’ll be asked to tell the research team about any symptoms you have. You may need to do some things at home, like take a throat and nose swab every week, or keep a diary.


Who runs coronavirus vaccine studies?

In England, the research partner of the NHS is the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). The NIHR is working with equivalent NHS research partners in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales on vaccine studies.

If you sign up to be contacted about vaccine studies, only researchers on studies approved by NIHR will be able to contact you.

There are currently 2 national coronavirus vaccine studies approved by NIHR in the UK, run by the University of Oxford and Imperial College London.

You can find out more about taking part in these vaccine studies at NIHR’s Be Part of Research website.

There are strict rules on safety and confidentiality that all health research, including vaccine studies, must follow.