Children could receive covid vaccines from August as the government pushes for maximum immunity, sources have revealed.
The plan leaked to The Telegraph means that up to 11 million under 18s could have jabs by the start of the autumn term, months ahead of when inoculations had been expected for children.
The government awaits data from a major child vaccine study by Oxford University, with conclusions due in June or July, which will dictate the final decision on jabs for children.
The proposal is bound to be controversial because the virus poses only a minuscule risk to children and there is constantly evolving data on vaccine safety.
Figures from Public Health England (PHE) show the risk of dying from covid if infected is 1,513 per 100,000 people for over-80s, but for children aged five to nine, this is just 0.1 per 100,000.
People who back the policy argue that it is important to minimise the risk of infection, despite academics who argue children do not contribute to the spread of covid.
Israel is the first country in the world to have rolled out vaccines to children, with 16 and 17-year-olds having jabs after the health ministry decided it was safe.
Britain’s vaccine drive, like Israel’s, has been immensely successful – with around three million first doses administered each week.
If the proposal to jab children goes ahead, this would mean 11 million kids could be vaccinated before the start of the autumn term.
A Department of Health and Social Care spokesman said ‘no decisions have been made on whether children should be offered vaccinations.’
Read more: The fascists are now after your kids …. Children ‘will be vaccinated from August with up to 11 million under 18s inoculated by the start of the autumn term’ as the government pushes for maximum ‘immunity’ (genetic modification)