COVID vaccination

UK to offer COVID-19 vaccines for young children with medical conditions

April 6 (Reuters) – Children aged between six months to four years with underlying medical conditions will be offered COVID-19 shots, Britain’s vaccine advisers said on Thursday.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) said eligible children should be offered two doses of the vaccine, with an interval of eight to 12 weeks between the first and second doses.

Britain’s health regulator, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), had authorised the vaccine – made by Pfizer (PFE.N) and BioNTech (22UAy.DE) – for the same age group in December.

U.S. officials rolled out the Pfizer-BioNTech shot for the age group last year.

Data from the U.S. showed most common side effects reported were similar to those seen with other vaccines given in this age group, such as irritability or crying, sleepiness, and fever, the JCVI statement said.

The JCVI, however, said it does not advise vaccination of children between six months to four years who are not in a clinical risk group.

NHS England confirmed it would begin offering vaccinations to those eligible from mid-June.

Health and Social Secretary Steve Barclay said he had accepted JCVI’s advise.

Reporting by Sinchita Mitra in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva

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Source: Reuters