Covid-19 Research1 Year on: Meet Our Outreach Team

Team Leader Vivien, Jason, Areti, Jenny, Ciro, Joanne and Elena support COVID Platform Trials, 7 days a week, working alongside the medics in screening patients who meet the criteria for Covid-19 Therapeutic Trials: TACTIC R, TACTIC E, DARE-19 and RECOVERY.  They also recruit COVID-19 in-patients under the NIHR BioResource ‘umbrella’ to take part in sub-studies: CIPP (COVID-19 Immune Phenotyping Programme) and COVID CNS.

Vivien says “I started coordinating COVID-19 related trials with the Point-of-Care COVID Test validation (SAMBA II testing last March 31, 2020) during the first wave. It was then taken over by the Trust’s Point Of Care Team in May 2020. My team for SAMBA were: Sherly, Julie Ann, Areti and Jenny, shortly followed by TACTIC R, which started May 2020 with Sherly and Jason. By October, TACTIC E and DARE  started. Gradually our team member increases as the load of activities were very high due to increase in COVID-19 patient being admitted.  Giovanni and Joanne have joined our team (not in photo).” Now Making our OUTREACH team a total of 6 research nurses.

What do OUTREACH studies involve?

The team visit COVID-19 in-patients, who are recruited to one of the COVID-19 Platform trials, they administer their randomised treatment and will continue post treatment with their follow-up bloods samples.

Alongside this, they also lead the Symptomatic Pathway for participants who have had a Covid-19 vaccine (Oxford and Janssen vaccine trials) who have symptoms and require a follow up visit.


During this time, OUTREACH Team have supported CUH and recruited 38% of all COVID admissions in January to the platforms trials

To date, our total recruits in this site are:

  • RECOVERY = 130 (180 sites, Global total recruits = 38953)
  • TACTIC R = 57 (32 sites, total recruits = 412); currently doing interim analysis
  • TACTIC E = 60 (2 sites, total recruits = 61)
  • DARE = 1 (1 site and is now closed)

Positive feedback

OUTREACH Team were delighted to see this feedback used to highlight their research, this was shared across the Trusts social media pages.


TACTIC-R patient feedback

Results and news from OUTREACH team

  • Tocilizumab infusion has demonstrated that an anti-inflammatory treatment such as Tocilizumab reduces the risk of death when given to hospitalised patients with severe COVID-19. It has also shown, that it shortens the time of admission and are successfully discharged from hospital and reduces the need of ventilation; the preliminary results will be made available via medRxiv and to a peer-reviewed medical journal, to find out more click here  to University of Oxford’s news page.
  • We have a new base on campus, which is separate from the CRF, to provide care to patients with Covid symptoms.
  • Two new Research trials are starting soon, they are focusing on Out-patients.
  • Two members of the team have been promoted to permanent band 6’s- congratulations on their promotions.
  • One new research nurse will be joining the team.
  • Non Covid research- The Outreach team also help out the workload in the Clinical Trial Pharmacy by helping them prepare the Maintenance Dose for a Cardiac Study. This is research study, is at risk of not continuing due to pharmacy capacity.  3 members of the team have undergone training to prepare the IMP. They are UNBLINDED staff