Do you find all the popular vacation spots are too crowded or too "exposed" for you to discover? Well if you happen to go to Missouri, U.S., why not check in to the "Hotel Influenza," where your vacation costs are covered, you get extra cash... and flu shots.
To better study flu vaccines, researchers at Saint Louis University (SLU) created "Hotel Influenza" which will house volunteers who are intentionally exposed to the flu in order to test the effectiveness of flu vaccines, according to a statement from the university.
So, how does the system works? Volunteers will be given a flu shots or a placebo vaccine, and then they will be intentionally exposed to a strain of the flu virus. Volunteers will then be quarantined in the hotel for about 10 days and monitored to see if they get sick.
The exposure doesn't necessarily guarantee they'll experience flu symptoms. If a guest happens to have been treated with a working vaccine rather than a placebo, they might not get sick. If they do fall ill, 24-hour medical care will keep their discomfort to a minimum.
Volunteers will be paid $3,500 for their time and travel expenses. The facility's rooms are equipped with standard hotel features, including private bathrooms, televisions and internet access. There's also a common area for socializing, and exercise equipment for working out.
The study will allow scientists to understand whether flu vaccines are as effective as they are thought to be. The Hotel Influenza will also help a long-term goal of developing a universal vaccination that can cover multiple strains of flu.
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