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VA Sierra Pacific Network (VISN 21)


Reno, San Francisco tabbed for COVID-19 trial

VA COVID-19 research

VA medical centers in San Francisco and Reno will begin clinical trials shortly for a COVID-19 vaccine.

Friday, October 30, 2020
In the coming days, the San Francisco VA Health Care System and VA Sierra Nevada Health Care System in Reno, Nevada, will begin a clinical trial for the single-dose investigational COVID-19 vaccine developed by the Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson. This is the fourth large-scale COVID-19 vaccine trial in the United States.

Veteran volunteers (men and non-pregnant women over 18) can enroll in the study at VA San Francisco or VA Sierra Nevada, with special focus on:
  • Frontline staff and essential workers
  • Black, Hispanic and Native American volunteers
The reason we’re asking minority Veterans to enroll is because the COVID-19 pandemic has affected members of these community at much higher rates than the rest of the population, especially Black, Hispanic and Native American populations.

The more participants from these communities in the study, the better researchers will understand if the investigational vaccine is truly safe and effective for the people who need it most.

Can I get COVID-19 from the investigational vaccine?

You cannot get COVID-19 from the investigational vaccine or the placebo used as part of the study. That’s because the investigational vaccine does not contain any live or killed virus. For more information about the Janssen clinical trials, including the investigational vaccine they’re testing, visit the Ensemble Study website.

Will the investigational vaccine make me higher-risk for COVID-19?

The investigational vaccine will not increase your risk of COVID-19. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), everyone is at risk for getting COVID-19 if they are exposed to the virus. However, some people are more likely to become more seriously ill than others, such as older adults and people with underlying health conditions. The investigational vaccine will not increase your risk of complications if you are diagnosed with COVID-19.

How can I sign up for this study?

Anyone interested in participating in the Janssen COVID-19 vaccine clinical trial at VA San Francisco or VA Sierra Nevada should sign up for VA’s coronavirus research volunteer list at VA's Coronavirus Research page.

Signing up for volunteer list does not guarantee enrollment into the trial. Volunteers will be contacted if they appear to meet a trial’s eligibility criteria or seem like a good match for another COVID-19 study at their local VA.

Veterans who live too far from these VA medical centers but want to volunteer for other COVID-19 vaccine clinical trials in their area can register with the Coronavirus Prevention Network.

To learn more about other VA research efforts on COVID-19, visit VA's COVID-19 research page.


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