COVID-19 vaccine trial participants who got placebo now getting the 'real deal'

Pfizer and Moderna are making sure trial volunteers for their respective vaccine studies are offered the active vaccine. This applies to the participants who received the placebo. The gesture is a way of thanking the trial participants.

Pedro Cruz, 35, said he signed up for the Pfizer trial to be part of the solution and to fulfill what he considers a civic duty. He found out a few weeks ago that he received the placebo, or non-active shot in the study, and was given the option of being first in line to get the real deal.

Cruz is a lab technician for a cancer clinic. He comes into contact with high-risk, cancer patients daily, so he said getting the vaccine changes his world.

"I don’t have to feel guilty, maybe? There could be something where I give them the virus and not knowing, then they pass away because it’s my fault," Cruz said, "but doing this vaccine, it gives me the relief of actually being there to protect those who can’t protect themselves."

Cruz thanked Pfizer for giving him access to the shot.

Moderna trial volunteers are also being offered the vaccine. The medical director at the DeLand laboratory running one of the local studies said this is a perfect way to thank the volunteers for their bravery, rolling up their sleeves for a vaccine trial.

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