05 April 2022
Parents and carers of children aged 5 to 11 will be able to book their child's COVID-19 vaccine from Thursday 7 April, with appointments available at Fort Regent's Vaccination Centre from Saturday 9 April. This follows the latest advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI).
From today, parents and carers will begin receiving letters, leaflets, and consent forms through parentmail. As with other vaccinations for children, parental consent is required, and a signed consent form will need to be handed in at the appointment for the COVID-19 vaccine.
5 to 11 year olds are being offered two doses of a paediatric version of the Pfizer-BioNTech (Comirnaty) vaccine, at least 12 weeks apart. This vaccine was first offered to vulnerable 5 to 11 year olds in February this year, again following JCVI advice.
The Vaccination Centre at Fort Regent will have a separate entrance for 5 to 11 year olds and the Queen's Hall will be separated into two sections - with one area for 5 to 11 year olds and one area for those aged 12 and above.
During the Easter holidays, between Saturday 9 April to Saturday 23 April, the Vaccination Centre will open earlier on weekdays for 5 to 11 year old appointments:
Opening times for 5 to 11 year old appointments:
- Tuesday to Friday, 09.30 - 18.30 (except Good Friday, 08.30 -15.30)
- Saturdays, 08.30 - 15.30
All other Islanders will continue to receive any dose they are eligible for by booking an appointment during the general opening hours. Opening times for all other Islanders continue as normal:
- Tuesday to Friday, 11.30 – 18.30 (except Good Friday, 08.30 – 15.30)
- Saturdays, 08.30 – 15.30
Parents will be able to book up to three children for a vaccination appointment at the same time via gov.je/vaccine, or they can book for more than three children at the same time by calling the Coronavirus Helpline on 0800 735 5566.
Deputy Medical Officer for Health, Dr Ivan Muscat, said: "I'd like to reassure parents that the paediatric version of the Pfizer-BioNtech vaccine is safe for their child aged 5 to 11. Following rigorous reviews of the safety, quality and effectiveness of the vaccine, various authorities such as the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), the European Medicines Agency (EMA), the Federal and Drug Administration (FDA), and Health Canada have confirmed it is safe and effective.
"Although children are generally at a lower risk of serious illness from the virus, a small number of children who do get infected go on to develop severe illness.
"The latest evidence suggests that offering the vaccine ahead of another potential wave will protect that small number of children from serious illness while also protecting many children from the impacts of milder infection.
"Vaccinating your child now against COVID-19 will provide protection for any future waves of infection, the more severe a future wave, the greater the likely benefits from vaccination."
Head of the Vaccination Programme, Emma Baker, said: "The Vaccination Centre is being adapted to accommodate vaccinating this young generation of Islanders. We have made the Centre as friendly as possible by creating a separate entrance and area for children to get vaccinated.
"We have dedicated appointment slots and times for this age group over the Easter holidays to ensure that young children and parents are in and out of the Centre as quickly as possible. We are also able to accommodate appointments for families at the same time so if you have more than one child coming for vaccination, you can book an appointment for them together."