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NHS Confederation - Extending eligibility for COVID-19 vaccination programme could reduce waste

Dr Graham Jackson, senior clinical adviser at the NHS Confederation, comments on eligibility for COVID vaccination being extended to 16-17-year-olds.

Commenting on the announcement that 16- and 17-year-olds will be able to get vaccinated against COVID-19, Dr Graham Jackson, senior clinical adviser at the NHS Confederation, said:

“The coronavirus vaccination programme has been a brilliant example of the NHS at its very best, with services working together and innovating for the benefit of their local communities. While efforts continue to vaccinate the remaining groups, three quarters of the adult population have already received their second doses and this is playing a key role in cutting the spread of infection.

“Health leaders will welcome the JCVI’s confirmation that first doses of the Pfizer vaccine should be extended to 16- and 17-year-olds, as there is a higher rate of infection in younger age groups, which could increase once the school summer holidays are over.

“Also, they are clear that extending the eligibility for the vaccine programme could tackle issues of supply wastage, with reports of no-shows and double-bookings across different vaccine sites presenting an ongoing challenge. However, it should be noted that this problem also relates to Moderna supply, which the JCVI’s recommendation will not affect.

“Our members ask that if you have booked an appointment, please keep it, and if you can’t make it, please make sure it is rescheduled.

“We now await details on how this new element of the programme should be taken forward by the NHS and from when, particularly as recommendations about second dose scheduling have not yet been confirmed, and our members will be delivering this activity alongside booster vaccines, mass flu immunisations and high demand for broader primary care services.”

Original article link: https://www.nhsconfed.org/news/extending-eligibility-covid-19-vaccination-programme-could-reduce-waste

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