The Antwerp University vaccines expert Professor Pierre Van Damme told the paper “Minors that wish to be vaccinated have been allowed to do so for some time. In theory we could offer 16- and 17-year-olds the Pfizer vaccine from the start of the summer holidays”.
If the vaccination campaign runs to plan everyone above the age of 18 that wants to be vaccinated will have been vaccinated by mid-July. The EMA has already approved the use of the Pfizer vaccine for everyone aged 16 and above. One the 16- and 17-year-olds have been vaccinated the question will be whether younger teenagers should also be given a jab. Pfizer has just submitted test results to the EMA that show that its vaccine is effective among children between the ages of 12 and 15. If the European Medicines’ Agency give the green light the vaccine would be given to this age group in September.
Johnson&Johnson, AstraZeneca and Moderna are also carrying out clinical trails of the vaccines on children.
The ultimate decision will be down to the politicians. However, experts in the field have not given any arguments against vaccinating adolescents. Professor Van Dame says that by not vaccinated secondary school children it would be more difficult for us to achieve the 70% to 80% protection level from the virus required to ensure herd immunity.