A Tayside politician has volunteered for a local Covid-19 vaccine trial.
Alasdair Bailey decided to put himself forward to see if he could “help speed up the process of developing this vaccine.”
He said he was “pleasantly surprised” when he was invited to the Clinical Research Centre at Ninewells Hospital to see if he would be a suitable candidate.
The Carse of Gowrie Labour member was then selected and given an injection.
The Tayside team is seeking to recruit 400 participants. It is the only Scottish site of the 17 UK sites trialling the Janssen vaccine.
A total of 6000 participants are being sought in the UK and 30,000 globally.
Mr Bailey documented his experience of taking part in the trial in a video to show how the process works.
He said: “I’ve never participated in any medical research but I thought I should put myself forward for this one given the enormity of the challenge that we face in getting vaccines ready in time-scales never previously attempted.
“I took the unusual step of sharing my experience in public because I wanted to show everyone that there is something here that us non-medically trained people can do to help us to get back to normality sooner.”
Mr Bailey was injected last week but does not know whether he has been given the vaccine or a placebo.
He said: “We’ll find out in due course. Next I have to put my symptoms into an app for a few days – any symptoms I get or just to report my general health condition.”
He will return in a couple of months’ time for the booster injection and be monitored by the trials team.
Speaking immediately after the vaccination, he said: “Nothing untoward, nothing concerning. It was a really nice appointment and a really nice wee bit of the hospital here at Ninewells.”
He said that whether or not he got the vaccine or the placebo was not important.
“What’s important is that I have made myself helpful to the people who are developing this vaccine.”
Mr Bailey stressed he was not endorsing the Tayside vaccine over other Covid vaccine trials and added the following caveat to the end of his video.
It said: “I am sharing my personal experience of taking part in this trial. Other experiences may differ. This video is not endorsed by the trial organisers.
“Please only take guidance on the trial process from the trial organisers. This is not an endorsement of any particular trial/vaccine over any other. There is no monetary incentive for taking part.”
A spokesperson for Dundee University said they were still encouraging people to come forward to get as broad a cross-section of the population as possible.
Anyone interested should email their details to firstname.lastname@example.org