Kids, teens won't receive COVID vaccinations anytime soon, says Health Dept

Deputy Director-General, Dr Nicholas Crisp, said that the priority right now was to reach the country's adult population.

FILE: In this file photo taken on 5 March 2021 registered nurse Florisa N. Lingad holds a Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine at a vaccination center established at the Hilton Chicago O'Hare Airport Hotel in Chicago, Illinois. Picture: AFP

CAPE TOWN - The national Health Department said that children and teenagers under 18 would not be receiving a COVID-19 vaccine anytime soon.

Deputy Director-General, Dr Nicholas Crisp, said that the priority right now was to reach the country's adult population.

“At this stage, they are not registered for use under the age of 18. For us and for Africa generally, I think our objective is to reach the adult population,” Dr Crisp said.

Crisp said that children could, however, be eligible in the future.

“That's not to say that we won't find ourselves at some point down the line vaccinating children and it's not to say that children don't get the illness. In terms of getting the population coverage of vaccinations, the challenge and the immediate focus is older people and we’ll work our way down," he added.

More than three million people have now been fully vaccinated in this country.

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