The Director of Public Health at the HSE’s National Immunisation Office has said that the first vaccines for those aged from 12 to 15 are expected to be administered this weekend.
Dr Lucy Jessop told RTÉ’s Morning Ireland that registrations open online on Thursday for this age group and will require the consent of one parent or guardian.
Dr Jessop said a strong uptake is expected as there is enthusiasm among parents about vaccinating their children.
She said that children will be vaccinated with mRNA vaccines, either Pfizer or Moderna, and each child will require two doses over three to four weeks.
Dr Jessop said that most children aged 12-15 recover well from Covid-19, but some require admission to hospital or to intensive care, while some children can develop Long Covid or develop a rare multi-system inflammatory condition.
She said that no additional safety concerns have been reported where these vaccines have been used among 12 to 15-year-olds.
Dr Jessop said the mRNA vaccines have been used on adults since December and 4.4 billion doses of Covid-19 vaccines have now been administered across the world.
She said that it is important for parents and children to look at up-to-date information on vaccines before choosing to be vaccinated.
Meanwhile, HSE Chief Executive Paul Reid has said almost 9,000 people received a vaccine dose at a walk-in centre over the weekend.
In a tweet Mr Reid said: “2/3 of these hadn’t previously registered. All age groups were represented and on occasions full families attended.
“We’re on the final leg of the vaccination programme now.”