More than half of parents with children are willing to have them vaccinated against Covid-19 if jabs are offered to under-18s, a survey shows.
A YouGov poll of 938 parents with children aged 17 or under found that 53% would get their child vaccinated, rising to 59% of parents who have already had, or were planning to get, the jab themselves.
However, one in five (18%) of all parents said that they would not vaccinate their children, while another 29% were unsure.
Even among those having the vaccine themselves, 29% of parents were uncertain about jabbing their offspring, while 12% said they would not do it.
Among those parents refusing the vaccine for themselves or who were undecided, 2% would get their children vaccinated, 24% were unsure and 74% would not.
The poll also found that people in professional jobs were more likely to want to vaccinate their children (58% compared to 45% for more manual workers), and men were more likely to say yes compared to women.
The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) is currently debating whether vaccines should be given to youngsters after the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine was approved for children aged 12 and over by the UK medicines regulator.
Several other countries, including the US, have already begun to vaccinate their under-18s.
Eir Nolsoe, data journalist at YouGov, said: “This new research shows that there is support among parents for getting their children vaccinated against coronavirus if a vaccine does become available.
“If the Government does decide to roll out vaccines to children and young teenagers, they will have to work to reassure parents and alleviate concerns in the same way they have with other groups.”
The poll found that the reasons parents would choose to vaccinate their children vary, but only 8% of parents said they would get their child the jab mainly to help protect people in their household or family members.
Some two in five said their main reason was for their children’s safety, and over half said they would do it for both reasons equally.