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Healthcare Worker Exposure Response & Outcomes of Hydroxychloroquine Trial

HERO-HCQ is a randomized clinical trial of approximately 15,000 Healthcare workers who are considered to be most at risk for COVID-19 exposure. UNC Chapel Hill has been site-selected as 1 of 40 sites that will be participating in the trial across the nation. We anticipate enrolling up to 375 participants working at different UNC Health facilities. It will test whether hydroxychloroquine (HCQ, brand name Plaquenil®) can prevent COVID-19 infection in healthcare workers.


  • Attend an initial visit as well as a follow-up in-person visit in Chapel Hill, NC
  • Provide a nasal swab for COVID-19 testing and a blood sample at the initial visit and follow-up visit
  • Be assigned to take either HCQ (study drug) or a placebo for 30 days
  • Complete weekly online surveys related to health, mood, and COVID-19 exposure.
  • The study will last 8 weeks in total

If you are interested in participating in this study, you must first join the HERO registry, a large, national clinical research community that gathers information from healthcare workers as it relates to the COVID-19 pandemic. This entails some surveys and questionnaires, and could provide opportunities for future research studies, including this one. Please visit the HERO website for additional information about the registry. Once you join the registry, the research team at large will address your eligibility for this particular study and send you an invitation to provide additional information if you meet necessary qualifications.


What if I join the registry and never hear back from the UNC Chapel Hill Site with regards to participation in the HERO-HCQ trial?
Unfortunately, this means that at this time you do not meet certain eligibility criteria required for participation in the study, or were somehow not affiliated with our site. One item to confirm, if you are indeed interested in being considered, is that you list a UNC facility as your affiliated place of work in your registry profile. Otherwise, we apologize for the inconvenience and hope you will stay tuned for additional research study opportunities available through the HERO Registry. Thank you!

Sponsors: The HERO Registry is funded through a Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute Award (COVID-19-2020-001). The program is coordinated by the Duke Clinical Research Institute and leverages PCORnet®, the National Patient-Centered Clinical Research Network.