By Jonathan McCambridge, PA
Young people who turn 18 on or before October 31 can now access their coronavirus vaccinations at the seven regional vaccine centres across Northern Ireland.
They can use the walk-in facilities or book an appointment through the online system from Thursday.
The move follows the announcement on Monday of new guidance from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) that the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine will be offered to some children and young people aged 12 and over.
Children and young people aged 12 and over who live with someone who is immunosuppressed will receive a letter from their GP on the next steps.
Arrangements for the vaccination of children aged between 12 and 15 with specific underlying health conditions to receive vaccinations are being finalised and will be announced shortly.
In the meantime parents are asked not to take children under 16 to vaccination centres until this is announced.
This group currently includes those with severe neuro-disabilities, Down’s syndrome, underlying conditions resulting in immunosuppression, and those with profound and multiple learning disabilities.
Meanwhile, a further 1,973 cases of Covid-19 have been reported in Northern Ireland, the Department of Health said.
Two further deaths of patients who had previously tested positive for the virus were also notified.
On Wednesday there were 134 Covid-19 positive patients in hospital, with eight in intensive care.
In total, 2,184,162 vaccines have been administered.