Pfizer vaccine approved for children 12-15

Friday 4 June 2021

Tags: vaccination, vaccine

Following a ‘rigorous review’ of the Pfizer vaccine, the UK’s Medicines & Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has today announced that it approves its use in children aged 12-15, saying it is safe and effective in this age group and the benefits outweigh the risks.

The UK’s vaccines committee will now decide whether children should get the jab as part of the UK rollout.

Contact welcomes today’s announcement which will be welcome news for many shielding and disabled children.

We have been campaigning hard to ensure that this group of children are prioritised for a Covid vaccine once licensed for under-16s. We wrote to the government’s committee on vaccines – the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) – and the Vaccines Minister calling for this, as well as for expanded guidance on which children can get off-label jabs and a process to be outlined to help doctors and families access unlicensed jabs.

Una Summerson, Contact’s campaign manager, says:

“Many families we support are still stuck at home desperately waiting for news of a vaccine for children. Now approval has been given, we hope that the vaccine committee will say that clinically vulnerable and other disabled children should be prioritised for the vaccine and for the government to act on this.” 

Contact’s research shows that 70% of parents want their clinically vulnerable or disabled child to have a Covid vaccine when it has been through trials and is licensed for use by children. And 10% would like it off-licence right now. Small numbers of those aged 12-15 have already received it off-licence, but often after a lengthy and difficult process.

Uncertainty remains for clinically vulnerable children under 12.