Safer to Wait but

Posted on 27th May, 2021


MP asks whether it's time to follow the American model and vaccinate children by Autumn?

Jeremy Hunt MP asks Vaccines Minister Nadhim Zahawi about the possibility of vaccinating children

(Parliamentary Question 2 minute video)


Article & PD



MHRA Data (blog)


Children may be peer-pressured by social media (see Toronto below) and at school - NB: UK Gillick Competence

"Note though that consent to medical treatment can be given by a child under the age of 16 if s/he is 'Gillick competent' [i.e. without parental consent]

  • children under the age of 16 can consent to medical treatment if they have sufficient maturity and judgement to enable them fully to understand what is proposed. This was clarified in England and Wales by the House of Lords in the case of Gillick vs West Norfolk and Wisbech AHA & DHSS in 1985"

Anna Brees: "I’ve never written a tweet with so much hope and trust - the campaign is ready please direct message @UsforThemUK if you are a celebrity and feel children will die if they have this vaccine now you’ll regret not speaking out and your reputation is damaged. #SaferToWait" Click for Anna Brees Overview Video


City of Toronto Tweet






PETITION - Do not vaccinate children against COVID-19 until Phase 3 trials are complete


ONS Data (04JUN21)


Local Government Assoication (LGA) -  Encouraging vaccine take-up among younger people (PDF)

  • Behavioural insights
  • Highlight the pro-social benefits of vaccination
  • Highlight social norms about vaccination
  • Highlight the long-term health consequences of COVID-19
  • Use trustworthy and relatable messengers
  • Make vaccination as easy as possible
  • Motivate vaccination through financial incentives
    • Financial rewards are considered more acceptable if delivered as vouchers over cash, smaller values over large, and certain rewards as opposed to lotteries ... However, be cautious when offering financial incentives as they can undermine people’s intrinsic motivation to get vaccinated ..., and could be perceived as a confirmation that vaccination is risky or undesirable 
  • Where is the govt information regarding necessity and safety issues, or the exisiting natural immunity that has been at work against COVID19 for the last 15 months?

LGA - "Encouraging vaccine take-up is likely to become more challenging as we move through vaccination cohorts, especially when reaching the lowest priority younger generations" (PDF)

  • "Younger generations are more likely to be vaccine hesitant (Freeman et al., 2021), partly because they perceive themselves to be at lower risk of developing a severe form of COVID-19." (Average age of death by COVID19 was stated as 82 years old! (See Green Book Tables for COVID19 and Flu, also COVID19 Deaths by age US and UK)
  • Where is the government information regarding safe proven COVID19 medication to prevent hospitalisation? (see NHS Dr Sam White 2min Video)

LGA - Who are our members? (PDF)

  • "Our core membership comprises 328 of the 333 councils in England and includes district, county, metropolitan and unitary authorities along with London boroughs and the City of London Corporation. The 22 Welsh unitary councils are in membership via the Welsh Local Government Association."
    • SPRING 2021 - North Somerset Council use their 'trusted' status to socially and emotionally promote vaccinations, without any reference to safety, side-effect or proven home remedy information (YellowCard & remedies) e.g. pages 2, 10, 11, 13 and 23 (Spring 2021
  • "We also operate an Associate scheme for organisations whose purpose and objectives are aligned with our own. Our Associates include fire and rescue authorities, police, fire and crime commissioners/police and crime commissioners, national park authorities and town and parish councils via the National Association of Local Councils (NALC)’s corporate associate membership."
    • MAR 2021 - Bleadon Parish Council use their 'trusted' status to socially and emotionally promote vaccinations, without any reference to safety, side-effect or proven home remedy information (YellowCard &  remedies)e.g. via articles by its young editor (page 5) and elderly chairwoman (page 3)
    • JUN 2021 - BLeadon Parish Council resolved not to urgently and directly inform residents of the Yellow Card system and associated reported COVID-19 vaccination side effects (Min 343.7.2)

See also :

SPI-B: Increasing adherence to COVID-19 preventative behaviours among young people (Overview 22OCT20 - PDF)

"To increase impact, communication strategies which are aimed at changing individual behaviours should be complemented by practical interventions in institutions and the surrounding environment e.g., universities should be required to shift to remote learning immediately, and schools should distribute free face coverings."

"3. Communications targeting young people should where possible be delivered by trusted, non-governmental sources e.g. charities, celebrities, sports clubs, commercial brands. Interventions should include online and face-to-face peer education. Mass and social media campaigns should use young people’s voices and be co-produced and piloted with young people".

04JUNE21 - UK regulator approves Pfizer's Covid-19 vaccine for children as young as 12 (PDF)

The MHRA concludes positive safety profile for Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine in 12- to 15-year-olds (Govt - 04JUN21 - REG174 UPDATE - PDF) Yet, official trails have not finished - PfizerAstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson trials end 2023, Moderna ends 2022

SPI-B Govt Options for increasing adherence to social distancing measures 22nd March 2020

  • "The perceived level of personal threat needs to be increased among those who are complacent, using hard-hitting emotional messaging. To be effective this must also empower people by making clear the actions they can take to reduce the threat" (PDF)

SPI-M-O: Govt Summary of further modelling of easing restrictions – Roadmap Step 2

  • "Para 32. The resurgence in both hospitalisations and deaths is dominated by those that have received two doses of the vaccine, comprising around 60% and 70% of the wave respectively. This can be attributed to the high levels of uptake in the most at-risk age groups, such that immunisation failures account for more serious illness than unvaccinated individuals. This is discussed further in paragraphs 55 and 56." (PDF)


See also:


Transcript - Covid19 Volume 696: debated on Tuesday 25 May 2021 (full text)

Jeremy Hunt (South West Surrey) (Con)

"I congratulate the Minister on the outstanding roll-out of the vaccine programme, which is a source of enormous pride to all of us, on all sides of the House. As we emerge from lockdown, we all want it to be a permanent change. For most families, the biggest priority is to make sure that schools remain open, even if we find that new variants arrive in the UK in the course of the autumn. We know that children do not tend to get bad symptoms, but they can spread the virus, so is it time to look at vaccinating the over-12s, as they are doing in the United States? Is it time to look at whether we can use some of the US Food and Drug Administration analysis to speed up that decision-making process, so that by the time children come back in the autumn, schools are protected and we can be confident that they will be able to stay open?"

Nadhim Zahawi

"I am grateful for my right hon. Friend’s question. He is absolutely right to focus on the protection of children but also of families and their community. That clinical decision has not been taken in the United Kingdom. He will be aware that, as well as the US regulator, the Canadian regulator has approved the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for 12 to 15-year-olds. Operationally, we will be ready, but ultimately the decision has to be a clinical one and our regulator will have to be satisfied that the vaccines are extremely safe. When you are vaccinating children, essentially, you are offering some protection to them—children can be infected with covid and there is some evidence of long covid among children—but on the whole it is to protect their families and to protect against transmission in communities. Vaccines have to be incredibly safe before we administer them to children, but we have the infrastructure in place to be able to do that, as and when the regulatory and clinical decision is made."

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