Children in Portsmouth aged between 12-15 will be invited for Covid vaccines through schools
CHILDREN across Hampshire aged between 12 and 15 are set to be offered their first Covid vaccine, with jabs administered in schools.
Nationwide the NHS has now started its rollout of jabs for the age group – with almost three million children eligible for one dose of the Pfizer vaccine following the government’s acceptance of the UK chief medical officers’ recommendation.
Jabs will be delivered by the School Age Immunisation Service (SAIS) with consent required from the parent or carer in the same way as for any other school vaccination programme.
Steph Clark, Covid-19 vaccination lead at Solent NHS Trust, said: ‘Following recommendations from the four UK chief medical officers we will be offering Covid-19 vaccinations to all 12-15 year olds in the Portsmouth area.
‘We will be contacting parents through their child’s school, with families who home-school their children also being contacted. We encourage everyone eligible to come forward for vaccination to help protect themselves and those around them.’
It is planned vaccinations will be offered to all children in this age group in the majority of schools before October half term.
Director of public health at Portsmouth City Council, Helen Atkinson, added: ‘Expanding vaccination to those aged 12 to 15 will play a vital part in reducing the disruption to face-to-face education this winter.
‘The NHS is now preparing the national vaccination programme in secondary schools. We understand that parents, carers and young people may have questions around the programme and consent; we encourage them to check the NHS website which will help answer many of their questions.’
if the situation arises where a child wants to get the vaccine without parental consent, the child and parent will be invited for a joint discussion with the clinician or healthcare professional, who can make a decision about whether the child is legally competent to make decisions about their healthcare.
School Aged Immunisation Service providers are responsible for school age children so will make provision for children not in regular school – including those who are home schooled.
More information about this part of the Covid-19 vaccination programme is available at hampshiresouthamptonandisleofwightccg.nhs.uk/your-health/latest-information-on-covid-19/covid-19-vaccinations-for-12-to-15-year-olds.