THE mass vaccination of 12-15-year-olds in Halton is now underway, the council has confirmed.

A report to the authority revealed the next phase of the Government’s Covid vaccination strategy was due to be rolled out from next week at sites across the borough, but a spokeswoman for the council said they were already being administered.

As of the middle of September, 90 per cent of eligible people in Halton have had their first dose of vaccination and 83 per cent had had their second. Around 50 per cent of 16-17-year-olds had had the vaccine.

The council has also been deploying resources to particular areas in the borough, which have low vaccination and testing uptake and higher case rates, with a pop up bus heading to Windmill Hill/Norton North, Hale Bank, Hough Green, Halton View, Kingsway/Mersey.

A report to the council’s Health and Wellbeing Board said it was also working with Riverside College and workplaces to train ‘vaccine champions’ to encourage uptake.

It was announced by the Government last month that the next phase of vaccinations would be going to school aged children. The report said that was due to start next week, but the council has confirmed the programme has already begun.

Work is also underway to deliver third ‘booster’ jabs to over 50s, people with underlying health conditions and health and social care workers.

The report did warn though that supplies of flu vaccines could be impacted this year.

It said: “The seasonal flu vaccination programme has commenced.

"There are some delays from two of the main manufactures and unfortunately some practices and pharmacies will be affected by these delays, but where stocks of vaccine are available, the programme has commenced.

“All eligible individuals will be invited for a flu vaccination by their GP or local pharmacy.”

The report said there was no detail as yet as to whether the flu vaccination and Covid booster vaccine could routinely to be given together.