Publish date: 18 June 2021

Tameside and Glossop IC NHS FT, was recently recognised as the lead recruiter for the RECOVERY trial across England in February and again in March 2021. One of the recruits to the nationwide study was Jayne Kelly, from Denton, who is a keyworker and carer at Age UK, an elderly day care centre in Manchester. In January 2020 Jayne became ill with coronavirus and her condition deteriorated so much that she needed to be admitted to Tameside Hospital to manage her symptoms and was soon placed on a ventilator.

Upon admission to intensive care Jayne was signed up as a participant for the ‘RECOVERY’ trial which aims to identify treatments that may be beneficial for people hospitalised with suspected or confirmed COVID-19. As part of the study Jayne was randomised to ‘standard care’ meaning she did not receive any of the treatments being assessed at that point but would serve as a barometer by which the other treatments would be assessed. As part of her standard care Jayne was given dexamethasone, a type of steroid, which had been evidenced in an earlier RECOVERY study analysis to reduce deaths in symptomatic COVID patients by one-third if ventilated and by one fifth in patients receiving oxygen only.

Jayne spent over 10 weeks in Critical Care, isolated from her husband of 35 years and now suffers from muscle weakness due to her immobility whilst being ventilated. Having never taken part in research in the past, Jayne then signed up to another research study also run at the Trust called GenOMICs. This study investigates any potential genetic links to patients’ susceptibility to develop severe COVID infections.

Jayne states that she “wanted to do anything that might help other COVID patients”.

Jayne was transferred to another ward at the hospital when stable and recalled the first time she saw her husband since being admitted to hospital months before. She recalls that the nurses went all out to pamper her for the occasion, actually buying her a new nightgown, painting her nails and even sourcing a hair-dryer to blow-dry and style her hair to be ‘date ready’ as Jayne put it for their reunion.

Not yet recovered enough to return home Jayne remains too weak with continuing symptoms however, she reports to be improving all the time and has plans to get back to her love of singing at a charity gig this September. Jayne’s husband now calls her the ‘Singing Survivor’.

Jayne felt so strongly about the “wonderful care” she feels she received at the hospital, she has even emailed her local MP to let him know about her experience.

Jayne added: “I have been treated really well and the staff are all amazing and worth their weight in gold”. Jayne is pleased she has been able to contribute to the fight against COVID-19 through her research contribution, and is looking forward to more research opportunities in the future.