Health chiefs plan to launch the scheme for youngsters aged 12 to 15 to speed up the rollout. This comes amid fears the Government has been far too slow in rolling out the vaccination programme in secondary schools. The urgency follows figures which show an alarming surge in Covid among the under-20s. Just 15 percent of this age group in England are now vaccinated, up from 11.5 percent a week ago. When schools went back early last month, 33 percent of new cases in England were in that age group. Now that has grown to 46 percent.
Hospital consultant Dr David Strain has led a recent Exeter University study into the effectiveness of jabbing teenagers to protect the overall population.
He branded the increase “really quite scary” and highlighted the urgent need for a ramped-up teen vaccination campaign. Without vaccinating more teenagers quickly, Dr Strain fears older relatives of infected children will die needlessly of Covid.
Dr Strain added: “In our study, we anticipated six weeks or so of infections rising in children and adolescents after they started mixing. Then there would be an uptick of cases in over-65s.”
That was starting to happen and could cause hospitalisations to rise.
Although 94 percent of over-50s are double-jabbed, significant numbers are unprotected, despite more than 3.3 million booster jabs being given in England, it has been revealed.
A further 57 people died within 28 days of testing positive for the virus as of yesterday, bringing the UK total to 138,584, the Government said.
Separate figures from the Office for National Statistics show 163,000 deaths where Covid was mentioned on death certificates.Internet Explorer Channel Network