Coventry and Warwickshire healthcare leaders having been working in collaboration with the health and social care partners to get ready to deliver COVID vaccines to 12- to 15-year-olds and COVID boosters as part of the government winter plans.
The Department for Health and Social Care has confirmed that people aged 12 to 15 in England will be offered one dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. This follows the advice from the four UK Chief Medical Officers (CMOs).
The school aged programme will be offered by Coventry and Warwickshire Partnership NHS Trust’s (CWPT’s) COVID and School Immunisation teams just like other school immunisations, such as HPV and flu. Health leaders are working closely with the local authorities and all the schools across Coventry and Warwickshire to deliver COVID-19 vaccines to over 48,000 school children aged 12-15 in more than 90 secondary schools. The first phase of the vaccination programme for 12- to 15-year-olds will start on Monday 27 September and is expected to be completed by the end of October. The vaccination programme for this age group will be delivered through schools, not via GP practices.
Rob Spencer, Associate Director of Operations for the COVID Vaccination Programme at CWPT, said: “Parents and guardians will be contacted by the children’s schools in the coming days with full details and information about the vaccination programme being offered to their children, as well as a link to the consent form which must be completed prior to the vaccination.
“The offer of the COVID vaccine always remains a choice, but we strongly recommended parents and guardians take up the offer of the vaccine to help ensure we keep children well and in school, and to help to stop spread of the virus to those more vulnerable, including our families and loved ones.
“During the winter months we see more viruses including flu which can have serious health implications and can be fatal to people who are elderly and those who are vulnerable. By taking up the offer of the COVID vaccination, this will help boost the children’s immunity and protect their family and loved ones this winter.”
In addition to the COVID-19 vaccines being offered to children aged 12 to 15-years-old, Coventry and Warwickshire residents who fall into the cohorts announced by the government on Tuesday (14/9) as part of their winter plans are being offered a third dose of the COVID-19 booster vaccine, known as a booster jab. Residents who are eligible for the Covid-19 booster jabs will be invited by appointment only.
Those eligible will be contacted by the NHS, so there is no need for people to contact their GP.
Dr Sarah Raistrick, Chair of Coventry and Warwickshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), said: “We are continuing to work closely with our GP colleagues to vaccinate local people against Covid-19, and that will continue as we begin to deliver the booster jabs.
“You will be contacted by the NHS with information about how to book your booster. When invited, please make an appointment as soon as possible to get your third vaccination to ‘boost’ your immunity. You may be offered your flu vaccine at the same time, we know it is a safe and effective thing to do for you, so please, once you have an appointment get your vaccination.”
Those eligible for the booster jab will include over-50s and frontline health and care workers. The jab should be given at least six months after the second dose. People will get a call or text from their local GP led site to get the jab, or will be invited by the National Booking Service, which will start issuing invitations from next week.
Some of those in the original nine priority groups will not be eligible for the top-up until the New Year.
The booster programme will be delivered through existing vaccination sites including pharmacies, hospital hubs, GP practices and vaccine centers.
At this time the NHS will be prioritising care home residents and staff ensuring they are offered a vaccine by the beginning of November.
If you still haven’t had your first or second dose, there are more than 30 sites where you can get your Covid-19 vaccine in Coventry and Warwickshire. You can make an appointment at one of these at www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination. If you cannot use the website, you can phone 119 free of charge, 7am to 11pm, 7 days a week.
There are also many drop-in Covid vaccination clinics taking place across Coventry and Warwickshire. Details of all walk-in clinics are updated regularly at www.happyhealthylives.uk/coronavirus/covid-19-vaccination/vaccination-drop-in-clinics
Public Health England have published information for eligible children and young people on COVID-19 vaccinations and for individuals eligible for the booster vaccination.