“The team were very friendly and made us both feel at ease” | News from Whipps Cross Hospital

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“The team were very friendly and made us both feel at ease”

A mum whose little girl took part in a clinical trial targeting respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) shares her experience and encourages other parents to sign their children up.

Claire Bale’s daughter Emily took part in the HARMONIE trial at Whipps Cross hospital in February. The trial, which is running across all Barts Health hospitals, is looking at how well a vaccination called nirsevimab works to prevent babies and children from developing RSV, and if it helps reduce hospitalisations with the virus.

Speaking on why she chose to enrol Emily in the trial, Claire said: “I studied science at university and now work for a charity where a large part of my role is encouraging and empowering people to take part in research. So when the opportunity arose for my daughter to participate, I was very keen to be involved.

“The study itself was really attractive as it felt very low risk and there was a good chance Emily would benefit if she received the injection, and of course ultimately it may help other babies in the future too. Plus, the set up was very efficient so it’s easy to take part.”

For Claire, the experience of being involved in the trial and having her baby take part in the trial was really positive and she felt that staff really cared about both her and Emily.

“The team were very friendly and made us both feel at ease”, she explains. “It was clear they really cared about the babies. All the communications and information were clear and easy to understand. And Emily actually really enjoyed all the extra attention!”

She encourages other parents to consider enrolling their children in the trial if they’re eligible to do so. She explains: “If you chose to include your child in the HARMONIE study, your baby could directly benefit from doing so and become protected from serious RSV infection, and it could help other babies in future too.”

“If people don’t take part in clinical trials, we would never have new medicines or treatments. That’s why it’s really important that as many people, from as many different background and communities  take part in research if they can. There are lots of ways to do it and I’d encourage everyone to get involved.”

If you or someone you know would like to take part in research, you can find out more online or if you are a patient, you can speak to your medical care team.

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