Northern Ireland news

Warning issued to post primary schools about hoax Covid vaccine consent letters

A warning has been issued by the PHA to post primary schools about hoax Covid vaccine consent letters

A WARNING has been issued to post primary schools in Northern Ireland about hoax Covid vaccine consent letters, ahead of the roll-out of the jab for 12 to 15-year-olds.

The Public Health Agency (PHA) said it has written to principals to tell them about the fake correspondence, which contains "a number of important inaccuracies".

It comes after some schools reported they had received emails claiming to come from the NHS, which contain a "consent checklist" for vaccination and asks them to share it with parents and pupils.

The BBC reported that the fake consent form includes claims such as the vaccine being a risk for "strokes, blindness, deafness, clotting, miscarriages, anaphylaxis and cardiovascular disorders".

But in a statement to schools, the PHA said: "Materials include a branded 'consent form' has the look and feel of authoritative NHS communications using a made up NHS vaccines logo".

It added: "Please only forward to parents materials that have come from the PHA or your own Trust school nursing teams".

It comes as guidance on Covid-19 vaccination for school age children was published earlier this week ahead of the rollout of jabs to 12-15 year-olds next month.

Parents are being encouraged to speak to their children about the vaccine which will offered as one dose across schools in Northern Ireland.

The move was backed by the UK's four Chief Medical Officers. It will not be mandatory and parental consent is required, with forms being sent home in school bags over coming weeks.

Around 98,000 children will be eligible.

Infection rates in the north are currently highest among the 10-14 year age group - and have been for over a month.

Enjoy reading the Irish News?

Subscribe now to get full access

Northern Ireland news