Apparently if you’re lucky enough you can get the flu and get paid $3,000. But wait, don’t try running around naked in the cold, there is a catch. You have to be part of a government study by the National Institutes of Health. The government agency is running a study that deliberately infects the test subject with live flu virus. The reason for this is so the scientists can study how the human immune system fights the flu starting from initial exposure to the virus. The hope is to create a better flu vaccine in the future.
According to Dr. Matthew Memoli of the NIH, the plan is have 100 test subjects enrolled by the end of 2014. The compensation amount for participating in the study is $3,000. In order to lower the amount of risk to the test subject, only those persons under 50 and in good health are allowed to participate. Participants in the study will be kept quarantined in the hospital facilities of the NIH for nine days or until they are no longer contagious. Even though the dosage administered is to induce mild to moderate symptoms, the flu can kill. The health of the test subject will be constantly monitored to provide an increased level of treatment.
During the experiment it will be observed how long a person is ill and contagious, and the body’s immune system response will be measured. The experiments are being held at the NIH headquarters in Bethesda, Md.