Vaccination for pupils from September

Secondary school children could be offered COVID vaccinations from September, it has been reported.

The Sunday Times says that the NHS is considering measures including offering children aged 12 and older a dose of the Pfizer jab when the academic year starts in September.

Pfizer has said trials of its vaccine in children aged 12 to 15 showed 100% efficacy and a strong immune response.

The plans, which the Times says it has confirmed with government and NHS sources, are reliant on advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) due this summer.

JCVI member Professor Adam Finn, from the University of Bristol, said: “We need to be in a position to immunise children, particularly teenagers, promptly and efficiently if we need to.

He added: “It is extremely important that education in the next academic year is not disrupted in any way.”

“We should only be doing vaccine programmes when we need to do them,” the professor said.

A spokesperson for the Department of Health and Social Care said: “No decisions have been made on whether children should be offered vaccinations and we will be guided by the experts once clinical trials have concluded.

“As we’ve already said, we are preparing for a booster programme to take place from the autumn and we continue to plan for all scenarios.

“We have hit our target of offering vaccines to everyone in phase one of the programme and we are on track to offer a jab to all adults by the end of July.”

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