Can 16 and 17 year olds get the second Covid vaccine? Rules on second jab for teenagers explained

The second Covid vaccine dose for 16 and 17-year-olds should be given 12 weeks or more following the first vaccine dose

More than 46 million people have now received both doses of a Covid vaccine, but when can 16 and 17-year-olds get their second jab?

Here’s what you need to know.

Can 16 and 17-year-olds get the second dose of the Covid vaccine?

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) is now advising that all 16 to 17-year-olds who are not in an at-risk group should be offered a second dose of the Pfizer vaccine.

The second vaccine dose should be given 12 weeks or more following the first vaccine dose.

For those in this age group who have had Covid-19 infection, the second vaccine dose should be given 12 weeks or more following the first vaccine dose, or 12 weeks following a positive Covid-19 test result – whichever is later.

This advice is alongside the existing offer of two doses of vaccine for 16 and 17-year-olds who are in ‘at-risk’ groups.

Professor Wei Shen Lim, Chair, Covid-19 immunisation, JCVI said: “Booster vaccine doses in more vulnerable adults, and second vaccine doses in 16 to 17 year olds are important ways to increase our protection against Covid-19 infection and severe disease. These vaccinations will also help extend our protection into 2022.

“If you are eligible, please make sure to have these vaccines and keep yourselves protected as we head into winter.”

Dr June Raine, chief executive of the Medicines & Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), added: “We welcome the recommendation for 16 to 17-year-olds to come forward and have a second dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine.

“People can be reassured that when we gave approval for the Pfizer vaccine for those 16 years and over in December 2020, we had thoroughly reviewed all the clinical trial data.

“We have continued to carefully scrutinise all the data we have available to us and our robust surveillance programme includes monitoring all suspected reactions for adolescents as well as adults.

“We ensure all suspected reports are carefully followed up. The Expert Working Group of the Commission on Human Medicines has confirmed that reports of suspected myocarditis (heart inflammation) following Covid-19 vaccines are extremely rare and that the balance of risks and benefits overall remains favourable.”

How can I book my second vaccine?

You can book your second dose of the vaccine on the NHS website or by calling 119, but in order to book your second jab you must be registered with a GP surgery. You can register with a GP if you do not have one.

If you had your first dose at a walk-in vaccination centre you can book your second dose using the NHS service within 24 hours of receiving your jab.

If you’re over 17 years and 9 months old and booking a second dose, you will need to have it 8 to 12 weeks after receiving your first dose.