Hong Kong extends Covid-19 vaccine scheme to everyone 16 and older

YP Reporter
  • Students as young as 16 can get the BioNTech vaccine with parental consent, while those 18 and older can also get Sinovac and only need their HKID
  • The government said vaccination centres are set to close at the end of September
YP Reporter |

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The government has expanded the coronavirus vaccination scheme, allowing people age 16-30 to receive the jab. Photo: SCMP / Edmond So

Yes, you can get a vaccine if you are 16 and older, the government said last week. Hong Kong residents as young as 16 can get the BioNTech vaccines, while those 18 and older can get the Sinovac one.

Eighteen-year-olds can just bring their HKID cards, while 16- and 17-year-olds will need to bring along a consent form signed by their parents. The form can be downloaded from the government vaccine website .

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Hongkongers aged 16 to 29 can make reservations for their vaccine starting at 9am on April 23 via the online booking system. They will be able to get their shot from one of 29 Community Vaccination Centres (CVCs) and 18 Hospital Authority out-patient clinics. They can also make an appointment with a private doctor.

Currently, only those aged 30 and above are allowed to receive a jab. However, younger people can get one if they belong to groups such as health care workers, teachers and restaurant staff.

Opening up the Covid-19 vaccinations scheme to the 1.08 million Hong Kong residents aged between 16 and 29 takes the total number of people eligible in the city to 6.5 million, amounting to 88 per cent of its population.

Professor David Hui Shu-cheong, who advises the government on the pandemic, said a citywide vaccination programme was needed to be completed as soon as possible to develop herd immunity.

“It is meaningless to stretch the operation of a vaccination programme, as many people [who have not been vaccinated] could be infected,” Hui said, warning that new waves of infections could emerge if inoculation was done slowly.

“The effects of a vaccination programme could only be seen by getting it done quickly, like what was being done in Israel or Britain,” he said.

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He said it was likely that the city would use up all the BioNTech vaccines it had ordered.

“Hongkongers usually would rush for an item if they know it would soon run out,” he said.

Separately, the government said the CVCs were expected to close in late September. Those hoping to receive the BioNTech vaccine, which is mainly available at CVCs, are urged to get their first dose by the end of August to ensure they receive both doses ahead of the closing.

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