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Hong Kong opens COVID-19 vaccine drive to kids aged 12 and older

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HONG KONG: Hong Kong will enable kids aged 12 and above to obtain the BioNTech coronavirus vaccine because it seeks to spice up immunisation charges within the metropolis.

Authorities officers stated on Thursday (Jun 10) they are going to provide the vaccine to about 240,000 kids from 12- to 15-years-old beginning on Friday, becoming a member of different international locations which have began vaccinating kids.

The transfer comes as Hong Kong is urging its 7.5 million inhabitants to get inoculated. Since its vaccination drive started in late February, simply over 15 per cent of the inhabitants has been totally vaccinated.

READ: China to offer COVID-19 vaccine to children as young as 3

The town has seen widespread vaccine hesitancy resulting from a distrust of the federal government and outsized fears of unintended effects after a number of folks died following inoculations, regardless of a dedication that the deaths weren’t immediately associated to the vaccine.

“The federal government attaches excessive significance to getting adolescents and college students vaccinated, and it’s the authorities’s hope that extra college students, dad and mom and lecturers will likely be vaccinated,” stated Secretary for the Civil Service Patrick Nip.

Since they’re under 18, kids should acquire parental approval earlier than they are often vaccinated.

Well being minister Sophia Chan urged dad and mom to let their kids get vaccinated to “assist them to return to highschool for his or her regular lives as quickly as potential”.

College students in kindergarten by means of secondary college are at the moment attending solely half-day courses as a part of preventive measures in the course of the pandemic.

READ: ‘Prudent’ to extend COVID-19 protection to children now, experts say

The town is providing the BioNTech vaccine and the Chinese language-made Sinovac vaccine.

Hong Kong officers say these eager to obtain the BioNTech vaccine should accomplish that by the top of August earlier than the doses expire, and that vaccination centres administering the BioNTech vaccine will stop operations in September.

The non-public sector is providing a slew of incentives to encourage folks to get vaccinated. Firms are providing gold bars, a Tesla automobile and even an condominium in fortunate attracts open to vaccinated residents.

Hong Kong ended a six-week streak with no native infections final week when a 17-year-old lady examined constructive regardless of having no journey historical past. Her mom and sister later additionally examined constructive.

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