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Coronavirus / Young people at higher risk of Covid set to be offered vaccinations

It comes as a further five cases of Covid were reported in Shetland

PEOPLE aged 12 to 15 who are particularly at risk of the effects of Covid infection are set to offered vaccinations.

This also applies to people who live in a household with someone who is immunosuppressed, and people who will turn 18 before 31 October.

It follows an announcement from the Scottish Government.

Meanwhile, five more cases of Covid have been recorded in Shetland.

Public Health Scotland says Shetland’s latest seven day rate per 100,000 population is just over 200, which is greater than areas like Grampian, Ayrshire and the Highlands.

Speaking about the change in guidance on vaccines, NHS Shetland’s interim director of public health Dr Susan Laidlaw said on Tuesday: “As per the Scottish Government announcement, we will start calling young people who are due to turn 18 before 31st October, to invite them to attend a clinic at the Independent Living Centre to receive their first dose of the Covid-19 vaccination by the end of July.

“We are also planning clinics for the specific group of children aged 12-15 who are particularly at risk from the effects of Covid infection, and those who live in a household with someone who is immunosuppressed.

“We are identifying all the young people from health and care records and will be starting to call very soon.

“However, could young people and parents alike please refrain from contacting the vaccination team to request a vaccine at present, unless they think they are eligible but are not registered with a GP in Shetland.”

Children aged 12 and over are not generally being invited for a vaccination, but earlier today Scottish first minister Nicola Sturgeon encouraged UK vaccine chiefs keep this under review.

Previously the youngest age people could receive the vaccine at was 16 – but only those with underlying health conditions.

Dr Laidlaw, meanwhile, added that NHS Shetland is calling in all over 18-year-olds who have not yet had their first vaccine, or who are due their second vaccine.

“Please continue to look out for phone calls, some of the calls will now show as coming from 01595 743319, but some may still be from a withheld or unknown number,” she said.

“We are still sending out letters to anyone we have not been able to contact by phone. We may run more ‘walk-in’ sessions during our last few clinics but these will be advertised nearer the time”.

Anyone aged 18 and who has not yet been invited for their first dose, or who had their first dose more than eight weeks ago, is asked to contact shet.covidvacinationscheduling@nhs.scot or leave a message on 01595 743319.

People are asked to remember to include their full name, date of birth and which dose they need.

Dr Laidlaw added: “The most recent figures show that 97.1 per cent of people in Shetland aged 40 and over have had one dose of the vaccine and 94.5% have had two doses

“For all those aged 18 and over, 93.3 per cent have had one dose and 85.9 per cent have had two doses.”