KU Medical Center looking for COVID-19 patients for nationwide study on treatments

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KANSAS CITY, Kan. — If you have COVID-19, you might be able to help doctors understand it a little better.

The University of Kansas Medical Center is participating in a nationwide study. It’s known as ACTIV-2 (Adapt Out COVID). This trial is part of the Accelerating COVID-19 Therapeutic Interventions and Vaccines effort announced by the National Institutes of Health.

According to Johns Hopkins University, nearly seven million Americans tested positive for COVID-19 so far, and the medical center is hoping to be part of the solution. Vice Chair of Transitional Research Mario Castro is heading the study.

“The speed of things that have happened in just in the last six months is unbelievable,” Castro said.

Castro said the trial is aimed at using COVID-positive people to test treatments of the virus and use placebos to test how well they work.

“Even though this is part of the Operation Warp Speed initiative, is that it’s been conducted through the National Institute of Health, and the NIH has its own rigor about how things are done. And, you know, they’re all peer reviewed and driven by major academic centers like KU,” Castro said.

The trial is for people 18 and older with mild to moderate symptoms who are fighting the virus. It focuses on overall treatment of the virus and fighting blood clots that develop in some patients.

Castro said the risks to participants is similar to giving blood. Some patients might feel lightheaded, but they will be monitored.

“We’ve had very few patients ever have to discontinue the treatment. But of course, of anybody experiencing any side effects we would stop the treatment from that, so we’re going to monitor during that infusion to make sure that patients are safe,” he said.

Castro said he’s proud to help work on the project and hopes people will be glad they participated.

“We might have for the first time that a new treatment for COVID-19 outpatient infections, which would be a great advance,” Castro said.

If you are interested in participating in this trial with active symptoms can contact the study coordinator, Luigi Boccardi, at 913-588-4022. KU Medical Center is partnering with the University of Kansas Health System to recruit participants through its outpatient clinics and swab clinics as well. 

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