COVID jabs to be offered to children aged 12 to 15, UK’s chief medics decide
Written by Hit Music Radio News on 09/09/2021
Children aged 12 to 15 will be offered a COVID vaccine, the UK’s chief medical officers (CMOs) have decided.
England’s Professor Chris Whitty said they came to their decision after considering “what effect this will have on transmission in schools and effects on education”.
“It’s a useful tool to reduce the disruption,” he added.
They will be offered a single dose of the Pfizer vaccine and the rollout should begin “as soon as possible”, England’s deputy CMO Jonathan Van-Tam said.
It comes following a review by the four CMOs of the decision by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) not to advise the move.
Children recently returned to school, and there are concerns of a rise in cases following the summer holidays.
The JCVI advised the government to look at “wider issues” – including the impact on schooling – when making the final decision.
The independent regulator, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), approved the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines for those aged 12 and over after ruling they met strict standards of safety and effectiveness.
In its advisory report, the JCVI said the “individual” health benefits from vaccination for children aged 12 to 15 was small.
The risk of potentially serious side effects – including myocarditis – is “very rare, but potentially serious”.
The Department of Health and Social care previously said that, like other school vaccination programmes, parent or carer consent will be sought.
Health Secretary Sajid Javid told Sky News that a child’s decision “will prevail” in the case of a conflict.
© Sky News 2020