Covid-19 vaccination roll out for 12-14 year age group from March 16
Massive boost to India’s aggressive vaccination drive against Covid-19 has now taken another landmark step. Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya has announced that children between ages of 12 and 14 will now be eligible to receive vaccination against Covid-19 starting Wednesday, March 16. Up until now children in age group of 15-18 years were only eligible for the vaccine.
“Union Government after due deliberations with scientific bodies has decided to start COVID19 vaccination for 12-13 yr and 13-14 yr age groups (those born in 2008, 2009 and 2010. i.e those who are already above 12 years of age) of the population from 16th March 2022,” the health ministry said in a statement. “The decision to allow younger children to take vaccines has been taken after due deliberation by the Union Government with the scientific bodies,” the statement added.
The ministry also announced that all people over the age of 60 years will now be eligible to receive a booster vaccine doses. With this, the condition of co-morbidities has been removed for the booster dose vaccination.
The government has said that the vaccine that would be administered to the 12-14 year age group would be Corbevax, which has been developed by Hyderabad-based Biological E Limited. The children in 15-18 year group, however, have been administered with Covaxin developed by Bharat Biotech.
The Union Health Minister made the announcement in Hindi on Indian social media platform Koo, “If the children are safe then the country is safe! I am happy to inform you that the COVID-19 vaccination of children in the age group of 12 to 13 and 13 to 14 is starting from March 16. Also, everyone aged 60+ will now be able to get precaution doses.”
Biological E Limited had applied for EUA (Emergency Use Authorisation) for Corbevax on March 9. Reportedly, the pharmaceutical company is now seeking permission to use this vaccine for age group 5-12 years.