San Antonio teen participating in Moderna COVID-19 vaccine trial

Hannah Ross, 14, doesn’t know if she got a vaccine or placebo

A San Antonio teenager is participating in a Moderna COVID-19 vaccine trial.

SAN ANTONIO – A San Antonio teenager is participating in a Moderna COVID-19 vaccine trial.

“The first injection 24 hours after I had a fever and my body was like all achy and tingly and I had fatigue and a sore arm, but all I really had was a sore arm,” said 14-year-old Hannah Ross, a vaccine trial participant.

Hannah’s mother, Judy Ross, said she first heard about the clinical trial being conducted by Tekton Research on social media.

“When I went to Hannah and gave her the information, you know, we just talked about how it was already approved for adults, and so probably be pretty safe for her to go ahead and get it,” she said.

Judy Ross said her daughter received her first vaccine or placebo on Dec. 18 and the second one on Jan. 13.

“I was interested in the science part of it and I’ve seen how COVID has kind of destroyed the community, like shutting down businesses and everything, and I wanted to be part of the solution to get them back on their feet,” Hannah said.

KSAT 12 News reached out to Tekton Research, but company officials declined to comment, citing ethical and business-related reasons.

Dr. Tess Barton, professor of Pediatric Infectious Disease at UT Health San Antonio, said it’s important to talk to your pediatrician if you want your child involved in a clinical trial.

“We would anticipate that children would respond well to the vaccine just as adults do. But children’s immune systems do work a little bit differently, and so it’s important before using that vaccine in children that we adequately study it,” Barton said.

Hannah won’t know if she got the COVID-19 vaccine or the placebo until the end of the study.

In the meantime, she will have follow up visits and keep track of any symptoms.

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About the Authors:

Tiffany Huertas is known for her in-depth storytelling and her involvement with the community.

Luis Cienfuegos is a photographer at KSAT 12.