Dad-of-two explains why he signed up to be a Covid vaccine trial volunteer

A volunteer says he decided to be part of a Covid-19 vaccine trial because he was inspired by the idea of doing something “for the good of mankind”.

Cammy Heggie is one of 10,000 UK volunteers for the Novavax trial of NVX-CoV2373.

And the 47-year-old a graphic designer told the Daily Record he was delighted to hear about the success of the Pfizer trial announced earlier this week.

The dad of two from Milngavie, East Dunbartonshire, said: “I saw something online and I signed up for the bank of volunteers.

“I waited a while before they asked me to submit another more in-depth application for this trial.

“My daughter has just started university and has to do home learning. I am bored with lockdown and I just wanted to do something which might help us all get back to normal as soon as possible. I was sick of waiting for something to help and wanted to do something positive.

“I have found lockdown really hard. I hate the fact that I can’t do what I want. I miss the office banter.”



Cammy Heggie
(Image: dailyrecord.co.uk)

Cammy’s wife Kirsten, 44, is very supportive of his decision but she worried at first he would be given a “live” vaccine containing coronavirus which might affect the family’s health.

But although he wasn’t exactly sure what he had signed up for, Cammy ensured there would be no risk to Kirsten or his children Gemma, 18, and Samuel, 15. He said: “I just thought it is for the good of mankind so why not do it?”

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Like the Pfizer one, Novavax is a two injection vaccine given three weeks apart.

Cammy had his first on October 27 and will get his second on Tuesday. He had Covid and antibody tests beforehand to ensure he didn’t currently or previously have the virus.

But he has virtually had no side-effects. He said: “I had a pain in my arm after getting the injection but that is common and it was away before I went to bed. I woke up next morning with a pain in my neck but that could have been that I slept funny. But even if it was the vaccine, it was away very quickly. I went out and ran almost 10k so I was absolutely fine.”

After his second injection, Cammy will be monitored at 35 days and then needs to report in every three months.

The Phase 3 study will test the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine across a broad spectrum of people. The US’s Federal Drug Agency has already decided to grant it Fast Track Designation status.

Gregory Glenn, president of research and development at Novavax, said: “Novavax remains committed to a data-driven and scientifically rigorous approach in demonstrating safety and efficacy, which we believe will support confidence in the vaccine.”

Results of the Phase 3 UK clinical trial is expected by next spring.

Cammy said: “There are actually thousands of trials all over the world in their final stages. Hopefully the good news this week will be followed by others and we will get back to normal by the middle of next year.”

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