London: British experts have said the benefits of vaccinating children against COVID-19 are not big enough to justify giving healthy teenagers, aged below 16, the jab.

The decision is at odds with the one made last week by the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) which recommended Pfizer vaccinations for anyone aged above 12 years of age.

However, the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation said that because it was not within its remit to consider the wider societal and educational impacts of vaccinating younger teens, Prime Minister Boris Johnson may want to seek further advice from the UK’s chief medical officers before making a decision.

The committee said in a statement early on Saturday that the health benefits from vaccinating children aged between 12 and 15 were “marginally greater” than the potential known harms but that this was “too small to support universal vaccination of healthy 12- to 15-year-olds at this time.”

 

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