JERUSALEM, June 2 (Xinhua) -- Israel will begin vaccinating teenagers aged between 12 and 15 against coronavirus next week, the ministry of health said in a statement on Wednesday.
The vaccination campaign in Israel began on Dec. 20, 2020, with the first phase targeting medical staff, people aged over 65, and chronic patients. Since then, the age of eligibility has been gradually lowered, and people aged 16 and above are currently receiving the jab.
The decision to expand the age range was taken despite the fact experts appointed by the ministry have warned about a probable link between the second dose of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine and myocarditis, or inflammation of the heart muscle.
Saying the vaccine is effective and safe, the ministry noted the risks of coronavirus complications are higher than those of the vaccine.
The number of myocardial cases in Israel was found low after observing young people aged between 16 and 19, the ministry added.
To date, more than 5.45 million people have received the Pfizer vaccine in Israel, or 58.4 percent of the total population.