Participant in PANORAMIC trial
Joshua works as a Senior Communications and Engagement Manager for NHS England and NHS Improvement. In early April he became unwell with COVID-19. After recording his positive test result, he received a text from the NHS asking if he would consider signing up for the PANORAMIC trial.
The Platform Adaptive trial of NOvel antiviRals for eArly treatMent of covid-19 In the Community (PANORAMIC) study is working across all UK communities to evaluate if treatment administered early in the course of the COVID-19 illness can help people aged over 50 and those at higher risk recover faster, without the need for hospital admission.
“The only way we can find added protection against COVID-19 is through research.”
How did you hear about the PANORAMIC trial?
I work for the NHS and have been involved in COVID-19 research as part of my role. I have been following all the trials around COVID-19 since 2020. When I got my positive test, I got a text asking me to sign up for the trial if I had a disability or long-term health condition. I called the number and was signed up right away.
What made you want to sign up for the trial?
Since becoming a wheelchair user through a spinal injury, I have been involved in disability sports and throughout the pandemic, I have seen my close friends with disabilities, hospitalised and suffering from Long Covid. This is what made me sign up. I was scared that my pre-existing condition would put me at greater risk of being hospitalised and I was willing to try anything to make sure that didn’t happen to me or others in the future. I could only do that by taking part in this research trial.
What was your experience in signing up?
It was super easy. I called up and then filled in a quick form online. I then got a phone call back within a few hours and was told I was taking part in the trial and was randomised to take some medication. The medication arrived the next day and I started documenting my symptoms using an online form that was sent to me each day.
Why do you believe it's important that people with underlying health conditions and those from disabled and chronically ill communities sign up for clinical trials such as PANORAMIC?
The only way we can find added protection against COVID-19 is through research. I have had first-hand experience seeing my friends with health conditions hospitalised through COVID-19, even after having a vaccine. Having other options on top of a vaccine could help stop people being hospitalised from COVID-19.