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ReCoVa-19 supports Oxford trial designed to keep over-65s with Covid-19 out of hospital

A Cambridge start-up is supporting a UK-wide clinical trial designed to help those in the community or in care homes recover more quickly from Covid-19 and stay out of hospital.

ReCoVa-19’s innovative testing and monitoring programme is being used to aid recruitment to the Principle trial being conducted by Oxford University.

Clive Minihan, director of ReCoVa-19
Clive Minihan, director of ReCoVa-19

The early interventions trial aims to find treatments that can be taken at home to help those aged 65 and over, or those aged 50-plus with a co-morbidity.

ReCoVa-19 was set up last year to help businesses and organisations introduce a bespoke Covid-19 testing and wellness programme.

Clients can proactively test for infection and immunity, using ongoing site monitoring, or opt for a health monitoring approach with reactive testing for suspected infections.

A patient management portal offers confidential and paperless handling of all the data - one used independently by some of the UK’s largest pharmacies.

Professor Mahendra G Patel, an investigator and the national BAME and community pharmacy lead for the Principle trial, approached ReCoVa-19 to aid recruitment of volunteers.

Using the positive case notification tool, an organisation’s in-house data controller can notify individuals who test positive and provide them with the information about the trial. Personal data is kept secure and GDPR compliant.

Prof Patel said: “ReCoVa-19 presents a hugely valuable platform in helping to reach out to those people who test positive and have symptoms, from the moment they are diagnosed in the search for an effective and early treatment.

“Participation in the trial could help reduce their symptoms and even the chances of being hospitalised.

“At the same time, they would be playing a vital role in the wider fight against the effects of the pandemic. Everyone at risk and eligible is free to join the trial. It's important we spread the message around this treatment trial as widely as possible as Covid-19 cases continue.”

The trial will evaluate the effectiveness of treatments already widely used in the NHS, and approved for safety in the study, among those in the target groups whose symptoms began less than 14 days ago.

Funded by UK Research and Innovation and the Department of Health and Social Care through the NIHR, the trial participants will either receive the usual care, or usual care and a treatment delivered directly to the home from the Oxford research team.

ReCoVa director Clive Minihan said: “ReCoVa-19 launched in response to the public health emergency of the pandemic to help minimise the spread of infection and facilitate safe working.

“We are proud to be supporting the UK government's national priority public health trial for the treatment of Covid-19, which will hopefully lead to improved treatments and better patient outcomes, including reduced fatalities, in Covid cases and potentially other infectious diseases.”

ReCoVa-19 director Dr Anthony Cooke, who also runs Cambridge Clinical Laboratories. Picture: Keith Heppell
ReCoVa-19 director Dr Anthony Cooke, who also runs Cambridge Clinical Laboratories. Picture: Keith Heppell

The ReCoVa team also includes directors Dr Anthony Cooke - who also runs Cambridge Clinical Laboratories in Milton - and Andrew Halliday, and is chaired by Professor Stephen K Smith.

The Principle trial - short for Platform Randomised trial of Interventions against Covid-19 In older peoPLE - is open to all members of the public who fit the criteria. Find out more about it, or determine if you are eligible, by visiting https://www.principletrial.org or telephone 0800 138 0880.

Employers can find out about ReCoVa-19’s programme at https://recova-19.com/ or by emailing info@recova-19.com.

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