Wales, in line with the other UK nations, is vaccinating people who are most at-risk of catching coronavirus and developing serious illnesses first, as recommended by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI). They have recommended the vaccine be offered to in the first instance to care home residents and health and social care workers, alongside people aged 80 and over. More information on how they reached their conclusions and details on at-risk groups (including those who have been shielding and/or have underlying health conditions) can be found at this link:
Current evidence strongly indicates that the single greatest risk of mortality from COVID-19 is increasing age and that the risk increases exponentially with age. Data also indicates that the absolute risk of mortality is higher in those over 65 years than that seen in the majority of younger adults with an underlying health condition. Accordingly, the JCVI advice largely prioritises the vaccine based on age.
Those age 16 and over who fall into the Clinically Extremely Vulnerable or at-risk clinical groups will be called for vaccination when vaccine is offered to those groups.
For children under 16 years, the JCVI advises that only those children at very high risk of exposure and serious outcomes, such as older children with severe neuro-disabilities that require regular residential care, should be considered for vaccination. It has also asked clinicians to discuss the risks and benefits of vaccine with those with parental responsibility. This use of the vaccine would be outside its authorised use, and would have to be assessed and prescribed for each child individually.
We will provide more details on how and when these groups will be called forward in the New Year. We expect to have a further vaccine by this point that could be delivered through other routes and we will be able to help clarify how this will be delivered. [17/12/20]