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Covid-19 vaccination to be extended to children aged 5 to 11; those between 18 and 29 eligible for booster shot

SINGAPORE — Children in Singapore between the ages of five and 11 will be able to get vaccinated with paediatric doses of the Pfizer-BioNtech/Comirnaty Covid-19 vaccine before the end of the year, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said.

The Expert Committee on Covid-19 Vaccination has assessed that the benefits of the Pfizer-BioNTech/Comirnaty vaccine outweigh the risks when used in a paediatric dosage for children aged between five and 11.

The Expert Committee on Covid-19 Vaccination has assessed that the benefits of the Pfizer-BioNTech/Comirnaty vaccine outweigh the risks when used in a paediatric dosage for children aged between five and 11.

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SINGAPORE — Children in Singapore between the ages of five and 11 will be able to get vaccinated with paediatric doses of the Pfizer-BioNtech/Comirnaty Covid-19 vaccine before the end of the year, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said.

In a news release late on Friday (Dec 10) night, MOH said that the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) has approved the use of such doses for children here, and vaccination can commence once Singapore “receive deliveries of the vaccine doses”.

“This will be the first Covid-19 vaccine HSA has granted approval for use in Singapore for this age group,” MOH said.

It added that the multi-ministry taskforce handling the Covid-19 pandemic here has since accepted the recommendation by the Expert Committee on Covid-19 Vaccination.

The committee has assessed that the benefits of the Pfizer-BioNTech/Comirnaty vaccine outweigh the risks when used in a paediatric dosage for children aged between five and 11, “especially given ongoing community transmission and the emergence of the Omicron variant”, MOH said.

It added that children with moderate to severe chronic medical conditions be prioritised for access to the vaccine.

MOH said that the recommended dosage of the vaccine for children aged five to 11 is “one third of that used in persons aged 12 and above”.

The ministry said that it has since signed a new supply agreement with Pfizer-BioNTech for the vaccine and it expects the shipment to arrive before the end of the month.

“MOH will work with the Ministry of Education and the Early Childhood Development Agency to roll out vaccinations for this school-going age group. We plan to start vaccinations before the end of this year,” said MOH.

BOOSTER SHOTS EXTENDED TO THOSE AGED 18 TO 29

Separately, MOH said that it will be extending the booster vaccination to people aged between 18 and 29 from Dec 14.

The ministry said that while the primary series of vaccinations provide “excellent protection” against severe disease, “there is evidence of waning protection against infection over time albeit at a slower pace in younger persons”.

The Expert Committee on Covid-19 Vaccination has since assessed that the booster vaccination is beneficial for this age group.

“From Dec 14, 2021, we will extend the vaccination booster programme to individuals aged 18 to 29 years. All eligible persons will be able to receive their booster doses of the mRNA vaccine five months after completing their primary vaccination series,” said MOH.

Those who are eligible for the booster shot will be invited to make an appointment.

“An SMS with a personalised booking link will be sent to their registered mobile number to book an appointment on www.vaccine.gov.sg. They may receive their booster dose at any Vaccination Centre or participating Public Health Preparedness Clinic,” said MOH.

The ministry added that to date, 96 per cent of the eligible population and 87 per cent of the total population have completed their full regimen or received two doses of Covid-19 vaccines.

Another 30 per cent of the population have also received their booster shots.

The ministry said that it needs more people to be “vaccinated and boosted” given the emergence of the Omicron variant which is “likely to established itself all over the world in the coming couple of months”.

“MOH therefore encourages everyone who is eligible for boosters to take them as soon as possible, and not to wait. The two mRNA vaccines can be used interchangeably as boosters.

“For those who are eligible to take boosters but have not received their SMS invitations, they are also invited to walk in to any Moderna Vaccination Centre to receive their booster vaccination without a need to book an appointment,” said MOH

Related topics

Covid-19 coronavirus MOH vaccine Omicron

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