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Houstonians can receive up to $2,000 to help with third phase of COVID-19 vaccine testing

KHOU-TV Houston logo KHOU-TV Houston 7/20/2020 Marcelino Benito
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As the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine enters Phase 3 of testing, two Houston clinics need your help.

"This is what we call medical heroes," said Dr. Sarah Hasan, a recruitment lead with DM Clinical in Tomball.

Thirty thousand people will receive the vaccine in the next phase. Houston is one of 87 locations across the country where the vaccine will be tested. The Texas Center for Drug Development is looking for about 1,000 volunteers to receive the vaccine.

"The interest we're seeing right now is on a whole different level," Hasan said. "Everybody wants to do their part so we can get back to normal."

Last week, Hasan said the clinic had more than 4,000 people call, text and email with questions and to apply.

"One of the most common questions is, 'Am I guinea pig? (And) Is this experimental?'" said Hasan. "Of course it's a totally valid question. This is not a live vaccine, so you cannot contract coronavirus from this vaccine itself."

Hasan said prior phases of testing focus on safety and side effects. This phase will figure out how effective it is.

"If everything works out the way we hope,and we don't get any unpredictable potholes and bumps in the road, we should know as we get into the mid- to late fall, early winter, but probably late fall weather we have candidates that really are safe and effective," said infectious disease expert Dr. Tony Fauci.

If you're 18 and older you're eligible to apply.

"All demographics, all races, it's a broad net we're casting out there," said Hasan.

Only folks with active cancers or autoimmune disorders would not qualify. If you're interested apply at www.houstonfightscovid.com.

"You can receive up to $2,000 to participate in this study," said Hasan.

Researchers will call you within 24 hours of applying to go over your medical history and determine if you qualify for the next steps.

"The part in the lab has already been done, but what we need now is the community to come together," said Hasan.

RELATED: Phase three of promising coronavirus vaccine study to take place in San Antonio

RELATED: Next vaccine trial will test 30,000 people at 87 sites across US, including in Houston

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