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STIKO recommends boosters for 12 - 17-year-olds in Germany

STIKO recommends boosters for 12 - 17-year-olds in Germany

STIKO recommends boosters for 12 - 17-year-olds in Germany

The Standing Committee on Vaccination (STIKO) has recommended a booster shot for young people in Germany aged between 12 and 17. 

Vaccine panel recommends boosters for young people aged 12 plus

Announcing the decision on Thursday, STIKO said that the new recommendation was in response to the rapidly rising number of infections, driven by the spread of the Omicron variant of COVID-19, and its possible impact on the healthcare system in Germany

The committee explained that studies had shown the effectiveness of vaccine protection was also diminishing over time in 12 to 17-year-olds, and that a booster shot improved protection against infection - and made transmission less likely. In general, the booster shot should be administered no earlier than three months after the initial course of vaccination. 

Some German states already offering booster shots to young people

The new recommendation brings the committee’s advice in line with the situation on the ground in some federal states, where some young people aged 12 and over have already been allowed to receive their booster jab. 

At the end of December last year, Federal Health Minister Karl Lauterbach said that children and young people aged between 12 and 17 should receive a booster shot “regardless of the recommendations of STIKO”. 

In its decision this week, STIKO clarified that there was still only limited data on the safety and effectiveness of booster shots for this age group, but that it nonetheless estimated the risk of serious vaccine side effects to be low. Across Germany, more than 38,2 million people (45,9 percent of the population) have already received a booster shot. 

Lauterbach responded positively to STIKO’s announcement, saying that it brought “certainty” to young people and their parents: “Boosters are also recommended for 12 to 17-year-olds,” he said. 

Abi

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Abi Carter

Abi studied History & German at the University of Manchester. She has since worked as a writer, editor and content marketeer, but still has a soft spot for museums, castles...

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