Photo used for illustrative purposes only.
Gulf Today, Staff Reporter
The Ministry of Health and Prevention (MoHAP) has named the health centres that provide the COVID-19 vaccine for the 3 - 17 age group. This comes on the heels of the recent approval of the emergency use of the Sinopharm vaccine for this age group, based on the results of clinical studies, the strict assessment to approve the emergency use of the vaccine, and the local evaluation that complies with the approved regulations.
Vaccines are available in 46 health centres covering the Northern Emirates, including 19 in Sharjah, 10 in Fujairah, 9 in Ras Al Khaimah, 4 in Ajman, 3 in Umm Al Quwain, and one centre in Dubai.
The approval for the vaccine comes as part of the UAE's efforts to combat the COVID-19 virus, and an affirmation of its proactive approach to ensure the health and safety of community members.
The ministry made it clear that the vaccination for the age group from 3 to 15 years will be optional not mandatory, and that the vaccine approved for children from 3 to 11 years is Sinopharm, while children from 12 to 15 years will be given either Sinopharm or Pfizer-Biontech.
While the vaccine manufacturing countries such as China, the USA, and Britain have begun conducting a study on the efficacy of the vaccine for this age group, the UAE is considered the Mena's first country to conduct such study.
Hussain Abdul Rahman Al Rand, Assistant Undersecretary for the Public Health Sector, and Chairman of the National Committee for the Implementation of the Provisions of International Health Regulations and Prevention of Pandemics, said, " The Ministry's approval for the use of the Sinopharm vaccine for children between 3 and 17 years came after it has proven to be safe, based on the results of the clinical trials, the implementation of all medical protocols in place and according to the highest international standards and practices."
Over long decades, children in every part of the world used to get safe vaccines against several diseases and viral infections, and the way the Sinopharm vaccine works is the same as these vaccines work, he noted.
Hussain Abdul Rahman Al Rand, Assistant Undersecretary for the Public Health Sector.
Al Rand made it clear that the decision, which was thoroughly examined, represents a significant step forward on the way to the recovery from the pandemic and immunisation of the wider community. He urged families and parents to visit the vaccination centres along with their kids to get vaccinated.
He continued, "Vaccination of children will protect them and maintain the health of those around them, especially the elderly. It also contributes to achieving the herd immunity necessary to limit the spread of the virus."
A health worker takes a nasal swab sample to test for COVID-19.
This comes in line with the recovery plan pursued by the UAE, which aims to get 100 per cent of the target groups vaccinated by the end of 2021.
High efficiency in coronavirus response
"The UAE has topped the global indicators for the coronavirus response, thanks to the guidance and support of the wise leadership. Meanwhile, health authorities are also continuing their extraordinary efforts in the national vaccination campaign, the early detection of cases and rapid intervention to prevent complications. The country also has one of the world's widest and fastest vaccination campaigns in the world, something that reflects the resounding success of the UAE in containing the crisis."
The coronavirus vaccine has proven to be effective in reducing infection rates, apart from reducing admissions to hospitals and ICU and mortality rates, hence the importance of the vaccine to protect society from complications of the infection, Al Rand said in conclusion.
For more information, please check this link: https://covid19.ncema.gov.ae/en/vaccinecenters/list
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