Committed to Making Change: A Patient's Story


Retirement hasn't slowed Deidre down one bit. With a spirit eager to make a difference, she immerses herself in community service, volunteering for charities Grandparents Raising Grandchildren, Woven Earth and The Hearing House.

Discovering the Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) vaccine study through Facebook, she hesitated before taking the plunge:

“Initially I was rather nervous and apprehensive before committing to being part of the study. However, I decided to look into it thoroughly and upon applying I was given the opportunity to ask questions (and I surely did ask a lot of questions), delve into it more, and finally ascertaining that I could do this!"

Throughout the study, Deidre said the team at Optimal was caring yet professional. From clinical visits to phone calls and emails, their encouragement kept her motivated and engaged. Even as COVID-19 swept through New Zealand, isolating loved ones and disrupting daily life, Deidre found comfort in the constant communication from the Optimal team. And while she thankfully never contracted the virus, their care and concern left a lasting impact on her.

And as she reflects on her journey, she takes pride in knowing that her participation has contributed to the greater good. By lending her voice to the fight against RSV, she's given hope to countless individuals and families impacted by the virus.

“Thanks to Optimal for their patience, guidance, and just being there for me during the journey which I would not hesitate to do all over again. I would certainly, without any hesitation, provide advice to anyone thinking of joining a research study to go for it. There is nothing to lose and so much to gain."

She also thanks GSK, the research study sponsor, for their innovative work and commitment to improving lives. Being part of their study was an honour and privilege, one she would gladly do again. With hope in her heart and a spirit of generosity, Deidre looks forward to continuing her journey of service and compassion.