Spain approves COVID vaccine for children in 5-11 age group

Spain’s health ministry has given the go-ahead for children between ages 5 and 11 to be vaccinated against COVID-19

Via AP news wire
Tuesday 07 December 2021 13:10
Virus Outbreak Portugal
Virus Outbreak Portugal

Spain’s health ministry gave the go-ahead Tuesday for children between ages 5 and 11 to be vaccinated against COVID-19 amid a rise in coronavirus infections in recent weeks.

Italy and Austria have also been inoculating children since the European Union’s drug regulator on Nov. 25 authorized Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine for use on that age group.

The European Medicines Agency’s decision opened the way for jabs to be administered to millions of elementary school pupils across the continent.

The Spanish health ministry tweeted news of the approval, following the decision of an expert committee. The rollout is due to begin Dec. 15, two days after the first of 3.2 million child vaccines arrive in Spain

Portugal, Spain’s neighbor on the Iberian Peninsula, is expected to follow suit, with pediatric jabs due to arrive there in two weeks’ time. Portuguese officials say more than 90% of the 12-17 age group have received jabs.

Both Iberian countries have high vaccine uptakes, with close to 90% of people eligible for the jabs receiving them. While the two countries' new daily infections have risen in recent weeks, neither is feeling a strain on hospitals.

The WHO’s Europe director, Hans Kluge said Tuesday that “it is not unusual today to see two-to-three times higher incidence among young children than in the rest of the population.”

Apart from helping prevent infections among the rest of their family, vaccinating children can help avoid further school closures and home learning, Kluge said in a statement.

___

Follow AP’s pandemic coverage at https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in