The NHS has worked to rapidly extend the programme to 16 and 17 year olds, the country’s most vulnerable children and those who live with vulnerable adults following changes in guidance from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI).
All 16-and-17-year olds will be offered one jab dose of the vaccine, under the new guidance issued by the JCVI earlier this week.
They can choose to wait to be contacted by their GP to arrange an appointment or to go to a local walk-in service offering vaccines to this age group. These services can be found at this website Search - Find a walk-in coronavirus vaccination site (www.nhs.uk).
While children and young people can get coronavirus, there are fewer cases compared to adults and symptoms are usually mild.
Alison Tonge, the NHS England and NHS Improvement director responsible for overseeing the vaccination programme across the Midlands, said: “The NHS has worked hard to put the JCVI’s independent and expert advice into action to roll out this new stage of our ground breaking vaccination programme. Now all 16 and 17 year olds can join the rest of the region and get their jab to protect themselves and their loved ones.
“COVID-19 vaccines are saving thousands of lives and building a wall of defence against the virus. They are the best way to protect people from serious illness.
"The vaccine is safe and effective and I urge anyone eligible of any age to come forward and take up the offer.”
Children aged 12 to 15 who are clinically vulnerable to COVID-19 or live with adults who are at increased risk of serious illness from the virus will be contacted by the NHS and invited for their vaccine over the coming days.
Those who are eligible include those with Down’s syndrome, or undergoing many cancer treatments, have had organ or bone marrow transplants or who are on the learning disability register.
The COVID-19 vaccine will also be offered to children aged 12 years and over who live with someone who is immunosuppressed, such as those receiving chemotherapy or who have had a transplant.
Children and young people now eligible will be offered the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.
Everyone aged 16 and over is eligible for a lifesaving COVID-19 jab and the NHS is urging people to come forward as soon as possible. Those aged 17 and three-quarters and over can book via nhs.uk or visit their nearest walk-in centre.
Second doses are available to people aged 17 and three-quarters and over who had their first dose eight weeks ago, in line with JCVI guidance.