To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to his oral answer on 14 December 2020, Official Report, column 46, whether people with learning disabilities are in the same priority category for covid-19 vaccinations as 75 year olds; and what priority is being given to vaccinations for people who are 75 or older who have learning disabilities.
6 January 2021
The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) are the independent experts who advise the Government on which vaccine/s the United Kingdom should use and provide advice on prioritisation at a population level. The JCVI advises that the first priorities for any COVID-19 vaccination programme should be the prevention of COVID-19 mortality and the protection of health and social care staff and systems, with old age being the single biggest factor determining mortality.
For the first phase, the JVCI have advised that the vaccine be given to care home residents and staff, as well as frontline health and social care workers, then to the rest of the population in order of age and clinical risk factors. People with a learning disability who are clinically extremely vulnerable, including adults with Down's syndrome, will be vaccinated alongside those aged 70 years or older. People with specific underlying health conditions, including a severe and profound learning disability, are prioritised to receive the vaccine in advance of those aged 60 years and older in phase one.