Vaccine for young teens pondered

Vaccine for young teens pondered

The jury is still out regarding the inoculation of children aged between 12 and 15 against Covid-19 with an mRNA vaccine, after Greece’s National Vaccination Committee said on Monday that it is an issue that is still under consideration.

Even though the European Medicines Agency (EMA) may have given approval for the vaccination of children, the chairman of the Greek committee, Maria Theodoridou, clarified that the EMA position is not binding but signals the possibility of each country to launch its own strategy on this issue.

“The commission’s recommendation may concern the vaccination of children at increased risk of serious illness and not all children,” she told the Health Ministry’s daily coronavirus briefing on Monday.

She noted that there are several factors that must be taken into account, namely what part children play in the transmission of the disease, the benefits of vaccination in relation to the educational and other activities in which children participate, as well as the safety and efficacy of the vaccines. Another factor will be the acceptance of parents whose consent will be required.

For Theodoridou, as well as for the general secretary of primary healthcare, Marios Themistokleous, the main priority is adult vaccinations.

By Monday afternoon, at least one dose of the vaccine had been received by more than 3,630,000 citizens (34.5%), while at least 2,040,000 citizens have been fully vaccinated (19.44%).

Meanwhile, younger ages have shown keen interest in getting vaccinated since the appointments platform opened for them last week. Indicatively, since last Wednesday, 107,000 citizens aged 35 to 39 scheduled appointments, while 63,000 people aged 30 to 34 did the same from last Saturday until Monday.

What’s more, at least one dose of vaccine has already been administered to 20.5% of people aged 35 to 39 and 17% of people aged 30-34. If scheduled appointments are included, these percentages rise to 36% and 29% respectively.

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