Cold study has some hot under collar

July 24, 2008 at 2:20 PM

LONDON, July 24 (UPI) -- Medical trials for research into the common cold at a budget motel chain in Britain are being held under safe conditions, the chain's spokesman said.

Workers for the Holiday Inn hotel chain, which has rooms for under $45 a night, are concerned about the tests even as their employer says a full risk assessment has been carried out, The Daily Telegraph Reported Thursday.

Retroscreen Virology, a European medical research firm, rented motel rooms on the top floor for tests.

"Staff are up in arms and very concerned," a friend of one of the workers told the Telegraph. "It's not right or fair. This sort of thing is meant to be done at a hospital, not a hotel with carpets and curtains."

Andrew Smith, a spokesman for the chain said the latest research, a "safe, controlled medical study into a type of common cold" was approved by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency and a risk assessment was conducted.

"The study is taking place in a sectioned-off area and is supervised by fully qualified medical staff. It presents no risk," Smith said.

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