Safety data on a child vaccine study is expected to be revealed this summer which is when ministers are expected to decide whether youngsters can be given the jab
The Covid jab could be offered to children as early as August under plans being drawn up the Government to push for maximum immunity from the virus.
Supporters of the plan believe that vaccinating children may help to minimise the spread of the virus but critics say youngsters pose a relatively low risk.
Safety data on the critical child vaccine study, being run by Oxford University, is expected to be revealed in June or July which is when ministers are expected to decide when youngsters can be given the jab.
Two sources involved in the vaccination programme told the Daily Telegraph that August is the soonest that Brits under the age of 18 could be given the jab.
If the roll out is given the green light then there is a possibility that most of the 11 million school-age children in the UK could be vaccinated before the autumn term.
Vaccines could be offered to children as early as August (stock image) (Image: Getty Images)
Figures released last week showed that coronavirus infections lifted very slightly among children and teenagers as schools reopened.
England’s overall case rates decreased slightly in the week of March 8 to 14 as nearly four in ten people are now estimated to have Covid antibodies amid the UK’s vaccine rollout, according to the surveillance report.
But slight increases were seen in case rate among the 0-9 and 10-19 year age groups which was likely to reflect schools reopening during that week, the Public Health England (PHE’s) report said.
Children were known to be less susceptible to catching coronavirus but scientists now believe this may not be the case for the new variants.
Supporters of the plan believe that vaccinating children may help to minimise the spread (stock image) (Image: Getty Images)
To date there have been 4,307,304 coronavirus cases and 126,284 deaths in the UK.
Sage expert Professor John Edmunds said there was a “significant risk of a resurgence” of the virus until all Brits have been jabbed and called for the vaccine rollout to turn to children.
A Department of Health and Social Care spokesman told The Mirror: No decisions have been made on whether children should be offered vaccinations.
While clinical trials are underway to test the efficacy and safety of Covid-19 vaccines in children and young adults, these trials have not concluded yet.
Critics say youngsters pose a relatively low risk (stock image) (Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto)
We will be guided by the advice of our experts on these issues including the independent Joint Committee on Vaccines and Immunisation.
The news comes as Boris Johnson bragged to MPs that the UK’s vaccine success was down to ‘greed’ and ‘capitalism’, according to a report.
The Prime Minister is said to have made the outrageous remarks during a Zoom chat with Tory MPs on Tuesday evening.
He was celebrating the pharmaceutical industry for producing the jab at an unprecedented speed.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson (Image: Getty Images)
On Tuesday a total of 28,327,873 people had received their first dose and 2,363,684 had their second jab.
Mr Johnson reportedly told members of the Conservative 1922 Committee: “The reason we have the vaccine success is because of capitalism, because of greed my friends.”
However Mr Johnson quickly performed a U-turn, telling the Tory backbenchers he ‘regretted’ the statement and repeatedly asking them to forget about it.
Sources told The Sun that the Prime Minister noted that AstraZeneca was producing the jab at a cost and he was grateful to the firm for its tireless hard work.
He also said pharmaceutical giants were behind the vaccine success, hailing how they ‘wanted to give good returns to shareholders’.
Downing Street declined to comment on the claims.