Home Coronavirus: News and Advice 5 – 11s invited to get a COVID-19 vaccine ahead of Easter break

5 – 11s invited to get a COVID-19 vaccine ahead of Easter break

by Guy Murphy

The NHS is inviting parents and kids to grab a jab at a local COVID-19 drop-in clinic ahead of the Easter holidays to avoid any disruption due to illness.

The COVID-19 vaccine is now available to all children aged 5 and over in Knowsley – simply book an appointment at: www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination or call 119.

Children aged 5 to 11 are being offered two smaller 10mcg doses of the Pfizer vaccine, with the second dose available 12 weeks after the first for most children. However, children with a condition that means they’re at high risk from COVID-19 or who live with someone who has a weakened immune system can get a second dose from 8 weeks after their first.

Local health professionals are keen to assure parents that giving this COVID-19 vaccine to children and young people is safe, effective, and offers a number of important benefits.

Dr Sarah McNulty, Knowsley Council’s Director of Public Health, said:

“Vaccination is our best tool against COVID-19 and getting children vaccinated can reduce the risk of infection to your child and those around them.

“Despite the easing of restrictions and ending of universal testing, we know that coronavirus is still circulating in our communities and therefore it vital we take steps to reduce the risk and protect those must vulnerable. 

“I urge parents and carers to get their children vaccinated ahead of the Easter break to help keep Knowsley safe.” 

Nathan Askew, Chief Nursing Officer at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital said:

“COVID-19 is usually mild in children, but it can make some children very unwell. Vaccinating children can reduce the risk of COVID infection to your child, and to others around them too.

“Because of this, we’d strongly urge parents and families to grab the jab before the Easter weekend, particularly if you’re planning any family gatherings with grandparents or other relatives who might be more vulnerable to COVID-19.”

He added, “Getting one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine will give good protection against your child and other family members getting seriously ill, but two doses are even better as it gives stronger and longer-lasting protection against both current and future COVID-19 variants.”

Find pre-bookable appointments for 5-11s in Knowsley at www.nhs.uk – if you can’t find one near to where you live, please keep checking back as more appointments will be added.

For any local residents who are struggling to get to a drop-in clinic or a pre-booked appointment, Healthwatch Knowsley is able to provide a taxi service. To access this support, residents can call 0151 449 3954 – lines are open Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm.

When can I book an appointment?

You can book your child’s 1st dose online from the day they turn 5.

You can usually book their 2nd dose from 24 hours after they had their 1st dose.

You’ll be offered appointment dates from 12 weeks after their 1st dose.

What should I do if my child has COVID-19 or symptoms of the virus?

If your child has a confirmed COVID-19 infection and is not at high risk from COVID-19, they need to wait 12 weeks before they can have a COVID-19 vaccine.

If they are at high risk, or they live with someone who has a weakened immune system, they should wait 4 weeks.

This starts from the date their symptoms started or the date of their positive test result, whichever was earlier.

If your child has symptoms of COVID-19, but has not had a test, they should wait until their symptoms are better before they get a COVID-19 vaccine. You can talk to a healthcare professional at the vaccination site about this.

For more information on children’s vaccines, go to: www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/coronavirus-covid-19-vaccination-for-children/