The vaccine will be offered to around 4000 children and young people across Scotland affected by severe neuro-disabilities, Down’s syndrome, underlying conditions resulting in immunosuppression, and those who have a diagnosis of learning/Intellectual disability.
The decision has been made in line with the latest advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI).
Also to be invited for vaccines by NHS Forth Valley before classes go back on August 16 are children and young people aged 12 and over who are household contacts of persons (adults or children) who are immunosuppressed, to provide indirect protection for that member of their household.
A household contact is defined as someone living in the same house or anyone the person comes in to contact with face-to-face most days of the week, such as a carer.
Young people aged 16 and 17 who are at higher risk of serious Covid had been invited forward for vaccination, as recommended by the JCVI previously.
NHS Forth Valley will be inviting those who are now 16, who were not vaccinated as part of that earlier offer, forward now.
Jillian Taylor, NHS Forth Valley’s Covid-19 vaccine delivery programme operational lead, said: “From this week, we will be contacting parents or carers of vulnerable children and young people aged 12 and over to get the Covid-19 vaccine and aim to have the majority of first dose vaccinations complete before schools return.
“Invitations will be extended by letter, phone or through their regular healthcare professional. The vaccine will be administered in the most appropriate setting depending on the child or young person’s care or health needs. That may be in their own house, in a care setting or at a clinic.
“Those aged 12 and over who are household contacts of someone who is immunosuppressed, or who have regular face-to-face contact with someone who is, will receive a national letter.
“There is no need for anyone in these groups to do anything, we will be in contact. Please do not attend a drop-in clinic as the vaccine cannot be administered to these groups in that setting.
“We would urge those now eligible to get the vaccine to provide the best protection against coronavirus.”