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Practices to begin vaccinating vulnerable 5 to 11-year-olds

by Jess Hacker
31 January 2022

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Practices have been told to begin inviting eligible 5 to 11-year-old children for their Covid-19 vaccine this week.

In line with advice set out by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), practices have been told to identify children who are in a clinical risk group or who live with someone who is in immunosuppressed.

The expansion to the programme will see around 500,000 eligible children offered two 10 microgram doses of the Pfizer vaccine eight weeks apart: a third of the amount used for adults.

The campaign will initially be led by more than 850 GP-led vaccination teams and hospital hubs.

Parents and guardians have been advised to wait for the NHS to contact them. They have also been asked to attend with their children.

Meanwhile, people aged 16 and over who are severely immunosuppressed have been told they can book their booster online from today (31 January).

This means around 400,000 people who are severely immunosuppressed are eligible for a fourth vaccine, at least three months after their third dose.

As of this week, nearly 138 million vaccinations have been given in the UK, with 37 million boosters given since the campaign launched late last year.

The NHS has administered more than 3.5 million vaccines to people aged 12 to 17, of which more than 2.4 million are first doses.