No decision yet on Covid vaccine priorities for under-50s

No decision yet on Covid vaccine priorities for under-50s

Experts are waiting to see how vaccines work in different groups of people before deciding who among the under-50s should be prioritised for a jab.

The plan put forward by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) will see vaccines rolled out to older members of society – depending on their effectiveness in this age group – alongside care home workers and health care staff.

It is hoped that the first phase will protect 99% of those at risk of death from Covid-19, before moving on to younger age groups in order.

However, no decisions have been made on how the under-50s will be prioritised.

JCVI chairman Professor Wei Shen Lim told a Downing Street briefing: “We have not decided who else should be vaccinated beyond phase one.

“That’s not to say that they shouldn’t be vaccinated. We need more information on the vaccines, who they are good for and whether they protect against transmission or infection.

“In phase two of the programme it’s likely that we’ll prioritise individuals who may suffer because of the need for hospitalisation because of Covid or perhaps because of long Covid.

“The reason it’s not been decided is because we need to also balance the possible prioritisation of individuals who are transmitting Covid instead.”

The current JCVI interim guidance says the order of priority should be:

Older adults in care homes and care home workers

  • All those aged 80 and over and health and social care workers, though they may move up the list
  • Anyone aged 75 and over
  • 70 and over
  • 65 and over
  • High-risk adults under 65
  • Moderate-risk adults under 65
  • All those aged 60 and over
  • 55 and over
  • 50 and over
  • The rest of the population, with priority yet to be determined

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