Local GPs and healthcare professionals are urging people in Walsall to come forward and take part in a first-of-its-kind clinical trial investigating the effectiveness of new antiviral treatments for COVID-19 – which can be safely taken at home.
Sonia, a nurse from the West Midlands, is already taking part – read her story here https://www.nihr.ac.uk/documents/case-studies/taking-part-in-panoramic-sonias-story/29707
The PANORAMIC trial is assessing a range of purpose-designed antiviral treatments which could help people who are at risk from COVID-19 in the community recover sooner, prevent the need for hospital admission and ease the burden on the NHS.
These new antiviral treatments are intended for use in the very early stages of infection, by people in the community with COVID-19 who are at higher risk of complications.
Dr David Shukla, Clinical Research Lead for Primary Care at the NIHR Clinical Research Network West Midlands (CRN WM) said:
“This is a great opportunity for patients to support the trial of a ground breaking treatment for COVID-19. We are very grateful to those who have already signed up, but more are still needed – we hope that vaccinated patients will sign up to help us gather the vital information we need to add ammunition to the fight against the virus.”
Anyone who meets the eligibility criteria can sign-up to take part in the study directly through the trial website: www.panoramictrial.org
They can join the study if they are aged 50 and over, or between 18 to 49 years with underlying health conditions that make them clinically more vulnerable. All participants also need to have had a positive COVID-19 test (PCR or Lateral Flow) and be within five days of the onset of symptoms.
In addition, people who receive a positive test for COVID-19 will be contacted by the trial team or a local healthcare professional, such as a GP or a research nurse, to ask them to consider enrolling in the study. All participants take part from their own homes, without needing to visit a clinic or hospital.
To enable the benefit of each treatment to be compared against standard care – a total of 10,600 volunteers are needed to take part in each arm of the study. Half of the participants will be randomly allocated to receive the antiviral treatment plus standard care, while the other half will receive standard care alone.
The PANORAMIC study brings together GP practices, NHS 111, Test and Trace, care homes, pharmacies and other NHS and social care service providers from the region and right across the UK – who are actively identifying potential participants, inviting them to take part and supporting their participation.
Participants randomised to the group that receives an antiviral treatment will have their medicines sent directly to their homes by courier. They will keep a daily diary for 28 days through the PANORAMIC website or receive a phone call from the trial team on days 7, 14 and 28 to speak about their symptoms and any NHS care they have needed.
The results from this highest priority national study will provide a clearer understanding on how antivirals work in the UK population – which has a high vaccination rate – enabling the NHS to better plan how to make COVID-19 antivirals available for those who would benefit from them the most.
Professor Matthew Brookes, Clinical Director of the NIHR CRN WM added: “When taken in the earliest stages of infection, these ground-breaking, purpose-designed, COVID-19 antiviral treatments have the potential to greatly improve outcomes for patients most at risk from the disease.
“Taking part in this trial will help us to rapidly learn if exciting new treatments really do help people get better quicker and reduce pressures on the NHS. Earlier trials have shown these new antivirals to be safe and effective in treating COVID-19 and It’s vital that as many people as possible who are at higher risk from complications of COVID-19 join the trial do so .”
The NIHR is partnering with the University of Oxford, several other UK universities, GPs and the NHS to help deliver this national priority trial at pace and scale across the United Kingdom.
PANORAMIC is funded by the National Institute for Health Research, led by Oxford University’s Primary Care Clinical Trials Unit, while delivery of the trial is supported by the NIHR Clinical Research Network.
For further information, please visit: https://www.panoramictrial.org