Children aged 12-17 must wait 12 weeks after catching Covid before getting jabbed because it may reduce their risk of rare heart complication, health chiefs rule
Children should wait at least 12 weeks after catching Covid to get their jab, Britain’s vaccine advisory panel recommended today.
The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) said the longer gap should reduce the risk of myocarditis, a type of heart inflammation reported in a small number of children after vaccination.
The change in guidance applies to people aged 12 to 17. Children who caught Covid previously only had to wait four weeks, which remains the advice for adults over the age of 18.
Twelve to 15-year-olds are still only being offered one dose of Pfizer’s vaccine while officials monitor myocarditis rates in other countries.
But as of this week, 16 and 17-year-olds can now come forward for the second jab after the UK’s regulator decided the benefit of the jabs ‘clearly’ outweighed the risk.
Fifteen-year-old Quinn Foakes receiving a Covid-19 vaccination at Belfairs Academy in Leigh-on-Sea, Essex, in September
UK Government data shows nine in every million 16 to 18-year-olds will get myocarditis after Pfizer’s Covid jab, the same as around one per 110,000.
The risk is thought to be slightly higher with one in every 60,000 12 to-15-year-olds developing the complication after their first dose.