The Royal Pharmaceutical Society has said it supports the Government’s rollout of Covid vaccinations for 12 to 15-year-olds in the UK.
Some three million youngsters will be eligible to get a single dose of the Pfizer jab, with England and Scotland starting their rollout today, Wales expected to begin later this week and Northern Ireland offering jabs to that age group from next month. Vaccines will largely be administered in schools.
The RPS said “a broader population view must also be considered” but insisted it was behind the programme because by reducing transmission of the virus in 12 to 15-year-olds, it will protect “not only this age group but also the wider population".
Parents will be asked to give their consent for their child to be vaccinated. However, if a child is deemed to be competent to make an informed decision on the benefits and risks after a discussion with a GP or nurse, they will be able to have the vaccine even if their parents have not given their consent.
Dr Nikki Kanani, the deputy lead for the NHS Covid vaccination programme, said the vaccine is safe and effective and urged families “to work closely with their schools-based vaccination team to get their loved ones vaccinated.”
“Alongside one of our busiest summers, NHS staff have been working closely with schools to ensure they are ready to deliver the vaccine to children aged 12 to 15 who are now eligible,” she said.
“Following the decision by government, and building on the success of the NHS Covid-19 vaccination programme which has delivered over 77 million vaccinations, the NHS will now roll out to hundreds of schools over the next few days.”