Young people aged 16 and 17 can now get a second dose of the life-saving Covid-19 vaccine, and are being urged to book theirs as soon as it is due.
Previously only adults were offered a second dose, but eligibility has now been extended to 16 and 17-year-olds. They are able to have their second dose 12 weeks after their first jab, or eight weeks after if they are at high risk from Covid-19 or they live with someone who is more likely to get infections.
Sixteen and 17-year-olds who have had a Covid-19 infection at any point after having their first dose should wait 12 weeks from getting their positive result, or four weeks if they are high risk from Covid-19, before getting their second dose. Eligible teenagers will be contacted by the NHS via letter or text message when it is their turn to get a second dose.
Councillor Jasbir Jaspal, the City of Wolverhampton Council's Cabinet Member for Public Health and Wellbeing, said: "The Covid-19 infection rate among 16 and 17-year-olds remains higher than the city average, and so it’s welcome news that they are now eligible for a second dose of this life-saving vaccine.
“The Joint Committee for Vaccination and Immunisation says that offering a second dose to this age group will give them more durable protection and further reduce the risk of infection, serious illness and hospitalisation from Covid-19. While fortunately younger people tend to have a mild illness if they catch Covid, they can still pass on their infection to others they come into contact with, including friends and more vulnerable family members, and so we are urging them to get their second dose as soon as they are able to."
Chief Nursing Officer for NHS Black Country and West Birmingham Clinical Commissioning Group, Sally Roberts, added: “I urge everyone who has had their first dose to book their second as soon as they can to help keep them and their loved ones safe. And for those aged 16 and 17 who are yet to come forward for their first dose, please remember it’s not too late.”
Latest figures show there were 361.2 new cases of Covid-19 per 100,000 people in Wolverhampton over the last seven days. That means 950 people tested positive for the virus in that same period – though the true number of cases will likely be higher.