Coronavirus: Vaccination

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 24 March 2023.

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Photo of Justin Madders Justin Madders Shadow Minister (Future of Work), Shadow Minister (Business and Industrial Strategy)

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether he has held recent discussions with medical advisers on covid-19 vaccination roll outs; and what steps he is taking to use medical evidence to inform decisions on future vaccination roll outs.

Photo of Maria Caulfield Maria Caulfield The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)

Each COVID-19 vaccine candidate is assessed by teams of scientists and clinicians on a case-by-case basis and is only authorised once it has met robust standards of effectiveness, safety and quality set by Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).

The independent Joint Committee on Vaccinations and Immunisations (JCVI) is the expert body set up to provide advice on national vaccination and immunisation programmes to all four United Kingdom health departments. The JCVI considers vaccines once they are authorised by the MHRA.

As set out in the Living with COVID strategy published in 2021 the Government intends to continue to be guided by JCVI advice on which groups should be offered vaccination for COVID-19 and when and to whom any booster doses should be offered.

The most recent advice from JCVI on COVID-19 announced on 7 March 2023 was to offer a precautionary spring booster to those in the population most vulnerable to serious outcomes from COVID-19, including older people and those who are immunosuppressed.

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