Vaccinating teenagers could halt winter surge, suggests scientist

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Vaccinating teenagers may help prevent a further coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak this winter, one expert has suggested. At present the vaccination programme is only open to adults and some children in exceptional circumstances.

But Professor Peter Openshaw, a member of the Nervtag advisory group, said that offering the vaccines more widely to those over the age of 12 could be key to “interrupting” the spread of the virus.

HEALTH Coronavirus
(PA Graphics)

He told Sky News:

I think it’s quite likely, unless we do something pretty radical by way of interrupting the spread of this virus, that we will have to extend vaccination into teenagers in order to prevent a further outbreak in this coming winter and the following spring.

I think we do know that (vaccines) are very effective at inducing an antibody response and they are safe – that has to be balanced against the relatively low risk of disease.

Read on...

The risk of disease is not zero and of course there are descriptions increasingly emerging of teenagers getting infected and then getting prolonged effects of so-called long Covid.

He added:

The immune responses (between adults and teenagers) are pretty comparable… there was one study which suggested that there are different immune responses in teenagers but actually there’s other studies which show that, between the ages of 12 and 18, you respond pretty well the same as an adult.

And I think that it looks very much as if the way that we need to interrupt this outbreak is to extend vaccination into those age groups.

HEALTH Coronavirus
(PA Graphics)

Intense debate

The issue has been focus of intense debate. Some academics have said it would be morally wrong to offer vaccinations to children, who are at relatively low risk of Covid-19, while vulnerable people in other countries are yet to receive their first dose of vaccine.

Others have said it is important to offer the jabs to teenagers to stem the spread of infection and prevent further disruption to education. The UK’s medicines regulator, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), has approved the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine for use among children aged 12 and over.

But officials have not yet confirmed whether the vaccination programme will extend to children once the adult campaign is complete.

Story via PA news agency

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  • Show Comments
    1. In the article you state “the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), has approved the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine for use among children aged 12 and over.” These jabs have only been approved for emergency use only, as no trials will be finished till the earliest Jan 2022. If you are saying giving a drug with a strong chance of myocarditus as a prevention for bad flu that poses little or no threat to children and young adults is a good idea, I think you need to do a little research and not just cut and paste the government story.

    2. More disgusting Covid-1984 propaganda from the Canary.
      Uncritically spewing out big pharma funded medical disinformation.
      Vaccinating children is completely unnecessary, reckless and flat out dangerous.

      1. Children and young people have a mostly mild or asymptomatic presentation when infected with SARS-CoV-2. They are at near-zero risk of death from COVID-19.
      2. There is an unusually high rate of reported adverse events and deaths following the COVID-19 vaccines compared to other vaccines. Some adverse events are more common in the young, especially myocarditis. Where potential harm exists from an innovation and little is known about it, the precautionary principle dictates to first do no harm. Better safe than sorry.
      3. Medium and long-term safety data about the COVID-19 vaccines are still lacking. Children and young people have a remaining life expectancy of 55 to 80 years. Unknown harmful long-term effects are far more consequential for the young than for the elderly.
      4. Vaccination policies rely on expected benefits clearly outweighing the risk of adverse events from the vaccination. The risk-benefit analysis for the COVID-19 vaccines points to a high potential risk versus no benefit for children and young people.
      5. Transmission of SARS-CoV-2 from children to adults is minimal and adults in contact with children do not have higher COVID-19 mortality.
      6. It is unethical to put children and young people at risk to protect adults. Altruistic behaviors such as organ and blood donation are all voluntary.
      7. Several prophylactic treatments as well as the COVID-19 vaccines are available to high-risk individuals so they can protect themselves.
      8. Natural immunity from infection with SARS-CoV-2 is broad and robust and more effective than vaccine immunity, especially in combating variants. Children and young people are safer with natural immunity.
      9. There are several prophylactic (preventive) protocols and effective treatments available to children and young people with comorbidities.
      10. Vaccinating children and young people is not necessary for herd immunity. After a year and a half of the pandemic, most people either have pre-existing immunity from other coronaviruses, have recovered from COVID-19 or have been vaccinated.

    3. Excellent comment, martin borland

      I’m also very disappointed in the Canary for uncritically accepting government/big pharma propaganda.
      The Canary does an excellent job of investigating most serious issues in the news but fails to investigate Covid or vaccine issues.
      However, I do realise that the Canary probably has to tread a very fine line here because the “powers that be” might easily close it down if it exposes too many truths that upset big pharma.

    4. I agree with all of the above.

      We do not forcibly vaccine schoolkids against seasonal flu. Older teachers are also at risk from this, and undoubtedly some die from it as well. None of us lives forever, and we should not sacrifice the young’s wellbeing because of neurotic paranoid fears.

      Thanks to the Govts deliberate bungling, Covid is now endemic. You should feel sorry for the few countries, like Finland, NZ, who had wise and decent enough leadership to prevent the spread.

      So rather than running around like headless chickens, can we accept that LIFE ITSELF has certain risks. This is not limited to covid.

      We have already stripped the young of owning property, having unionised jobs, any state pensions, a trustable media, nationally-owned healthcare, and anyone human to vote for. And oh yes – their planet.

      If kids in highly vulnerable situations WANT to take it, then a non-mRNA version (Preferably one of the Cuban vaccines), should be available for them.

      Can we please start thinking of the kids, rather than our own wants, and Big Pharma/Tory donors profits.

      Obv, the last request is tongue-in-cheek, as they come first in any priority.

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