Covid jabs for 5 and 6 year olds
(Photo: REUTERS/Yves Herman/File Photo)

In continuation of the NHS Covid vaccine programme, Covid jabs for five and six-year olds will be available at the local vaccination centres or community pharmacies outside of school hours.

Following the recent JCVI guidance that recommended all children between 5 and 11 would benefit from a non-urgent offer of the COVID vaccine, the NHS will send invitations to one million families with five and six-year-olds this week.

“Invitations being sent to families this week will set out how easy and convenient it is to take up the offer of a vaccine as part of the NHS COVID vaccination programme by booking through the National Booking Service, or visiting their nearest walk-in site,” NHS said.

Between April 25 and May 1, there are already more than 33,500 children aged five to 11 booked in for their dose of the life-saving vaccine, with a further 50,000 slots still available.

Dr Nikki Kanani, GP and Deputy Lead for the NHS COVID-19 vaccination programme, said: “It is great to see so many families already booked in for their children to receive their Covid vaccine this week, helping to protect themselves against potential future waves of the virus.

“Local vaccine sites are making it as easy as possible for families and allowing for longer appointment times so that families can discuss their decisions, and make sure it is a less daunting experience for youngsters.

“The vaccine is safe and effective – my 13-year-old son has had his two vaccinations and my 10-year old daughter will be getting hers soon – and I’d encourage all parents to read the information and consider booking their child in for a vaccination at the earliest opportunity.”

The JCVI has advised that all children aged between five to 11 will be offered two doses with an interval of at least 12 weeks between doses (or eight weeks for children who have medical conditions that put them at increased risk from Covid-19 or who live with someone with a weakened immune system.)

Families will be given a vaccination record card once their child has been vaccinated and are asked to keep this in a safe place. The vaccination record card provides the name of the vaccine, batch number and the date the vaccine was given.

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