When and how are children vaccinated?

style="float: right; margin-bottom: 10px; font-weight: 600;"Thu 27th May, 2021

At a renewed vaccination summit, Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) and the state premiers plan to discuss, among other things, Corona vaccinations for children on Thursday (2 p.m.). The aim is to offer vaccinations to all over-12s by the end of August. Before that, however, the EU Medicines Agency (EMA) is expected to decide this Friday on a corresponding approval for the vaccine from Biontech and Pfizer, which has so far been approved from the age of 16.The specific organization of vaccinations for young people, for example via schools or doctors' practices, as well as additional vaccine for this purpose, will then also have to be clarified. Another topic of discussion will be possible booster vaccinations. Merkel had made it clear that she did not expect this to happen before the fall.

Shortly before the probable approval of the first Corona vaccine for children and adolescents, there is controversy about the benefits and risks - also with regard to schools. The federal government clarified that vaccinations will not be a prerequisite for attending classes. Chancellor Angela Merkel and the states want to discuss the specific organization and required vaccine doses at a vaccination summit tomorrow. Signals from the Permanent Vaccination Commission that it might not issue a general vaccination recommendation for children for the time being caused discussion.

Thuringia's Minister President Bodo Ramelow (Left Party) advocates waiting for a recommendation from the Standing Commission on Vaccination (Stiko) because of open medical questions in dealing with Corona vaccinations of children and adolescents. "The scientific questions have not yet been conclusively answered as to whether children should be vaccinated at all - and if so, with which vaccine - and whether children with risk factors are preferred. I, in any case, will wait for the advice of the Stiko," said Ramelow to the Editorial Network Germany. According to the preliminary report, Ramelow rules out the possibility that children will only be able to participate in attendance classes if they have been vaccinated. "Have to be vaccinated - that's not possible at all. And one more thing is clear: When children are vaccinated, a legal guardian must always be present."

North Rhine-Westphalia wants to follow the recommendations of the Standing Commission on Vaccination (Stiko) when it comes to vaccinating children and adolescents. "I think we should stick to what the Stiko recommends," said Armin Laschet, North Rhine-Westphalia's premier and the CDU/CSU's candidate for chancellor, in Düsseldorf a day before the renewed vaccination summit of the federal and state governments. If one group is prioritized, vaccine is in short supply elsewhere. Looking ahead to the deliberations, he went on to say that the federal government must do everything possible to ensure that there will be sufficient supplies of vaccines in the summer and no shortfalls. With vaccination rates rising and case numbers falling, the CDU politician says, "The bridge to a normal life is under construction." For NRW, he announces further relaxation.

German Family Minister Christine Lambrecht (SPD) urges a rapid return to face-to-face teaching in German schools. "We must do everything we can to ensure that students can return to regular classes as quickly as possible," Lambrecht told the newspaper "Rheinische Post" (Wednesday edition). She said she was counting on a vaccine for children and adolescents being approved before the end of the summer, so that students could be offered vaccinations very quickly. Current studies showed how much especially school children were psychologically burdened by the pandemic.

According to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), more than 33 million people in Germany have been vaccinated at least once so far. Around twelve million people have already received the second vaccination and thus full vaccination protection.

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