Bruce Adamson, the Children and Young People’s Commissioner Scotland, has welcomed the advice to offer the Covid vaccine to children between the age of 12 and 15.
Bruce Adamson said:
“Children and young people have a right to the best possible health, that’s not just about protection from the Covid virus itself, but also the impact on their mental health due to isolation and other factors.
“The pandemic has impacted their right to education, their right to play, their right to see wider family and friends which is so essential to their development. Their education has been disrupted with two long periods of school closures.
“It is important that children are supported to make informed decisions about their own health. Children of this age group have told me over the last few months that they are in favour of having the choice to be vaccinated. That is not to say that all of them had made a decision about whether they would get a vaccine, but they wanted the option to be available to them.
“Of course, there have been some children who are concerned about vaccination, or who told me about parental concerns. It is important that there is no stigma attached to the choices that children make about vaccination.
“It is essential that this advice is communicated directly to 12 to 15 year olds in a child-friendly way so they can understand why they are now being offered the vaccine, and can have any questions they might have answered in a way they can understand. Children have the right to access appropriate information on decisions affecting them.
“Parents and carers will play an important role in supporting the decision-making around whether a child chooses to get vaccinated so it is important that they have all of the necessary information to support that choice.”