Israel to start administering COVID-19 vaccine on adolescents

COVID-19 vaccine

FILE PHOTO: COVID-19 vaccines

FILE PHOTO: COVID-19 vaccines

Israel said it will start vaccinating adolescents between age 12 and 15 against Coronavirus (COVID-19) next week, the Ministry of Health said in a statement on Wednesday.

The vaccination campaign in Israel began on Dec. 20, 2020, with the first phase targeting medical staff, people aged over 65, and chronic patients.

Since then, the age of eligibility has been gradually lowered and people from 16-year and above are currently receiving the jab.

The decision to expand the age range was taken after the experts appointed by the ministry warned about a probable link between the second dose of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine and myocarditis or inflammation of the heart muscle.

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The ministry said that the vaccine was effective and safe, adding that the risks of COVID-19 complications were higher than those of the vaccine.

“The number of myocardial cases in Israel was found low after observing young people aged between 16 and 19.

“Till date, more than 5.45 million people have received the Pfizer vaccine in Israel or 58.4 per cent of the total population,’’ the ministry said.