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Financial compensation offered for parents who enroll younger children into COVID-19 vaccine trial with StarMed

Children ages 6 months to under 2 years old can be enrolled by parents

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — StarMed Urgent Care says they're now enrolling younger children for a COVID-19 vaccine trial.

StarMed says they've partnered with Onsite Clinical Solutions to carry out the trial for the KidCOVE Moderna vaccine. Children aged 6 months through under 2 years old are qualified, and new patients are being accepted as part of the trial.

"It's going to help open up schools the way they should be open, so kids can go back to camps, play sports and not have to worry about getting sick," Dr. Arin Piramzadian said.

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Charlotte mom Alyssa Sharpe applied to have her kids take part.

"I want to protect their health and their safety. They both attend full-time daycare and being in a group care setting it does expose them to the virus in a higher risk level," Sharpe said.

Her daughter had COVID-19 in January. She was asymptomatic and luckily no one else in the family got sick.

"We had to separate our family. I took care of her while my husband took care of my then 6-month-old son. Wore masks 24/7 so the idea of putting them in the trial where she's had the virus, potentially that could give them some good information about how kids react," Sharpe said.

Signups for the trial are live on StarMed's website, and enrollment starts at the start of July. Parents who enroll their children will be entitled to compensation. An online questionnaire can also help parents determine if their child is eligible for the trial.

StarMed has taken part in other KidCOVE Moderna trials and officials say they have been successful. One challenge has been getting a diverse population to volunteer.

"We want a good range of patient population to make sure that it works and so that people can look back at it later on and say you know what I can get it, it's safe for my race and it's going to be perfectly fine," Dr. Piramzadian said.

StarMed officials say they're honored to have participated in 10 clinical research studies in the last year.