St Helens 5-11 year-olds encouraged to get their first Covid-19 vaccinations
Parents of 5-11 year-olds in St Helens are being encouraged to bring their children forward for their first Covid-19 vaccinations as a new programme for the age group is launched across the borough.
Article date: 20 April 2022
To help offer greater protection against Covid-19 for younger children in the borough, the vaccination programme is being rolled out at two sites in the borough, giving parents the chance to book their child in for a first dose of the vaccine.
Both sites, at the Saints Mass Vaccination Centre in St Helens and the Allied Pharmacies vaccination site at Roundwood Drive, St Helens have been provided with special waiting areas for parents bringing younger children, with trained staff and activities available to occupy children as they wait to receive the vaccine.
Parents can book their first vaccination for their child by booking online at Coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine for children aged 5 to 15 - NHS (www.nhs.uk) or Book or manage a coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination - NHS (www.nhs.uk). Alternatively contact the national booking service on 119.
Covid -19 infection rates in St Helens have continued to rise sharply in recent weeks. During the final week of formal testing in the borough up to 1 April, 1274 new Covid-19 cases were confirmed, whilst the infection rate in the borough was 705 cases per 100,000 people. Amongst those were 152 new cases confirmed amongst children aged 0 -17 years.
With the new vaccination programme, children aged 5-11 with no other underlying health conditions will be offered two paediatric (child) doses of the vaccine, with at least 12 weeks between doses. A paediatric dose is smaller than doses given to those aged 12 and over.
Any 5-11 year-olds who have health issues and are therefore more at risk from the virus can get two paediatric (child) doses, eight weeks apart. Your GP or hospital specialist should be in touch to help arrange this.
Ruth du Plessis, Director of Public Health at St Helens Council, said: "The Covid-19 Vaccination programme has been a great success across the borough and has given invaluable protection to so many residents against either catching the virus, becoming seriously ill or passing it on to others.
"Now that we have the opportunity to introduce to give the vaccine to 5-11 year-olds in the borough we would encourage parents to come forward and take the chance to have their child vaccinated,
"Although for very young children Covid-19 children may show itself as a relatively mild illness it can still make them unwell and allow them to pass the virus onto other children very easily. For children who have existing health conditions it is particularly important that they do have the vaccination if they can as it can help prevent them potentially becoming more seriously ill with the virus."
Some walk-in vaccination appointments for 5-11 year-olds may be available on certain days at the Saints and Allied Pharmacies vaccination centres. For further details on this please visit the St Helens CCG website.
Please note all children attending appointments must be accompanied by an adult at all times.
You can reduce the risk of spreading Covid-19 and other respiratory infections by following safe behaviour in your household or other indoor spaces.
More information on COVID-19 is available on the NHS website alongside other diseases: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/.