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Children & young people (12-17 years) COVID-19 Vaccination

Vaccinating 12-17 year olds against Covid-19

All young people aged 12 to 17 year-olds are now eligible for the Covid-19 vaccination.

Please click here to read our Frequently Asked Questions for Young People. 

More information is also available on the Everything COVID website designed by young people for young people.

Priority 16-17 year olds – two doses

The following groups of 16 and 17 year olds (who have been eligible for some time as priority groups) will be offered 2 DOSES of the PFIZER vaccine in line with established guidance:

  • Those who are health and care workers. People working in CQC-registered care homes (including those aged 16-17) will need to be fully Covid-19 vaccinated with two doses by 11 November 2021, unless they have a medical exemption.
  • Those who are clinically extremely vulnerable. Clinically extremely vulnerable individuals are described here
  • Those who have underlying health conditionswhich put them at higher risk of serious disease and mortality).
  • Those who are in receipt of a carer’s allowanceor are the main carerof an elderly or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk if the carer falls ill.
  • Those who share living accommodationon most days (and therefore for whom continuing close contact is unavoidable) with individuals who are immunosuppressed.
  • Those who are within three months of their 18thbirthday

16-17 year olds – two doses

Those aged 16-17 years are now eligible for a second vaccine dose. Appointments and some walk in clinics (offering the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines) are available to this group no sooner than the recommended twelve weeks after their first dose.

The full list of walk-in vaccination clinics across Norfolk and Waveney is available here.  The right hand column of the list indicates whether each clinic offers the Pfizer vaccine, as recommended for young people.

Vaccinating this group as soon as possible is important, ideally before the winter. 16-17 year olds have also been invited by the NHS to book on via the national booking service – if you would rather have a booked appointment as opposed to just turning up, please book your single dose, today.

Please don’t call your GP surgery / local doctor about this as we need to keep the phone lines free to help patients requiring appointments and urgent medical care. The NHS will contact you.

16-17 year olds do not need parental consent for COVID-19 vaccination.

For those in this age group who have had COVID-19 infection, the second vaccine dose can be given 12 weeks or more after a positive COVID-19 test result.


Priority 12-15 year-olds – two doses

Those at increased risk or household contacts of immunosuppressed individuals.

Eligible children aged 12-15 (see below) will be offered 2 doses of Pfizer vaccine, which is the only COVID-19 vaccine authorised for children (aged 12 and over) in the UK.

Vaccinating this group as soon as possible is important and they will be contacted directly by school vaccination/NHS teams to be invited. However, if a child has missed their vaccination slot at school due to illness, absence or being educated out of a school setting, they can now also book a first dose via the national booking service. A follow up vaccine will be followed up by the school vaccination team or local NHS service.

For 12-15 year olds, it is important that a parent/carer attends the appointment as well; they do not need to attend a school based appointment.

Please don’t call your GP surgery / local doctor – the NHS will contact you.

Children aged 12 to 15 who are eligible for two doses of the Pfizer vaccine (with parental consent) are:

  1. at increased risk of serious illness from COVID infection. This includes children with severe neurodisabilities, Down’s Syndrome, underlying conditions that result in immunosuppression and/or profound and multiple learning disabilities or severe learning disabilities; or
  2. household contacts of individuals (adults or children) who are immunosuppressed.

The waiting time between vaccinations is 12 weeks. 

There are additional clinical and safeguarding requirements that vaccination sites must meet in order to vaccinate those aged 12-15 and 16-17. Not all of the places currently vaccinating adults will be able to vaccinate children and young people. 

Those who are severely immunosuppressed get an additional third dose of vaccine as part of their primary course of immunisation. This offer is separate to the booster programme. More information is available here.

Letters have been sent to individuals from the NHS in Norfolk and Waveney providing a walk-in option for their third primary dose. Instead of waiting for GP practices to invite these individuals forward, you can visit a walk-in centre.

If you have received a letter from the NHS saying you need a ‘third primary dose’, you can go to one of the following walk-in clinics. You should wait eight weeks after your second dose: https://apps.norfolk.gov.uk/Primary3. Please take your letter with you when you attend a walk-in clinic.

12-15 year olds – one dose

All healthy 12-15 year-olds will be offered one dose of the Pfizer vaccine through a schools immunisation programme.  Parental consent is required for this age group. Parents or guardians can now also book their child for a single dose of the COVID-19 vaccine via the national booking service.

Like the flu and human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines, COVID-19 jabs will be delivered by local school age immunisation services (SAIS) who will work closely with schools to identify all eligible children. Appointments can also be booked online via the national booking service.

For 12-15 year olds, it is important that a parent/carer attends the appointment booked via the national booking system as well; they do not need to attend a school based appointment.

In line with standard practice for vaccinations in schools, consent letters are being sent out to parents and guardians with information on the COVID-19 vaccination.

Please do not contact your GP to request a vaccination. 

Hertfordshire Community NHS Trust are working with schools across Norfolk and Waveney to vaccinate 12-15 year olds in schools.

Background information

Other countries are already routinely vaccinating children over 12.  The US has been doing so from May 2021, as well as some European countries (such as France and Italy) following approval from EU regulators. Other countries vaccinating children aged 12+ include Brazil, Japan, Israel and Hong Kong.

Although COVID-19 is typically mild or asymptomatic in young people, it can be very unpleasant for some and, across the country, we have seen a number of severe cases of the virus in this group.  Young people are also at risk of developing Long-Covid so it is just as important for them to have the protection of a vaccine.

Key questions on the children and young people’s COVID-19 vaccination programme

Information answering Key questions on the children and young people’s COVID-19 vaccination programme is now avaialble on the UK Health Security Agency blog.

There is also more information available on the Just One Norfolk website.

Please click here to read our Frequently Asked Questions for Young People.

Further information on the vaccination of eligible children and young people will be available in due course.  The latest information will always be uploaded here on our website and shared through our social media channels.

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