STOCKHOLM (LifeSiteNews) — Sweden’s Health Agency decided against recommending COVID shots for children aged 5–11 on Thursday, arguing there is no “clear benefit” to outweigh the risks involved.
“With the knowledge we have today, with a low risk for serious disease for kids, we don’t see any clear benefit with vaccinating them,” Health Agency official Britta Björkholm said at a news conference, Reuters reported.
Swedish news outlet Svenska Dagbladet noted that in addition to the fact that “children rarely suffer from serious illness” as a result of COVID-19, the “milder” symptoms of the omicron variant were cited as a reason for the Swedish Public Health Agency’s decision.
Björkholm also admitted regarding the COVID shot that “even if it is a safe vaccine” with “few side effects, there is always a minimal risk” to such “vaccines.”
She added that they could reconsider the decision if different research findings emerged, or if a new COVID variant develops. Children considered high-risk already have access to COVID shots in Sweden.
Reuters acknowledged that while “registered” infection rates are high, hospitals and healthcare facilities are “not under the same strain as during previous waves.”
According to Sverige Radio, Björkholm also announced that because the symptoms of omicron variant are not “as severe” as previous variants, they believe they should begin to “phas[e] out” “infection control measures” beginning in February.