Information

Covid-19 vaccine roll out for children: FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002


Information requested

A Your representation in the consultation about and the approval of the COVID-19 vaccine roll-out, specifically to children
i) Please send a copy of your job description as well as details of all your responsibilities to the Scottish Government and to the people of Scotland in your role as Chief Medical Officer
ii) Please disclose whether you are personally and /or ultimately responsible for medical advice received by the Scottish Government
iii) If not, please disclose if there is any other individual who is responsible for medical advice received by the Scottish Government and what are their qualifications

B Responsibility for approving the COVID-19 vaccine roll-out to children aged 12-15 in Scotland
iv) Please detail the scientific studies you have relied upon to come to the conclusion to vaccinate children aged 12-15
v) Please detail the specific scientific evidence that has prompted you to overrule the JCVI decision not to recommend COVID-19 vaccination for children aged 12-15
vi) If there is no single individual who is ultimately responsible for advising the Scottish Government on health issues, please disclose how decisions are made - for example, whether there is an advisory body who is responsible for the approval of the COVID-19 vaccine roll out, specifically to children, and whether you are part of this advisory body
vii) If so, please detail those members, their job titles, their qualifications and if any are currently working with clinical responsibilities

C Contractual obligations between the Scottish Government and BioNTech/Pfizer that may have influenced the decisions to promote the roll-out of the COVID-19 vaccine to children
1. viii) Please detail all and any conflicts of interests of any individual involved in the decision to proceed with vaccinating children aged 12-15 in Scotland
2. ix) Please detail all and any conflicts of interest of the Scottish Government with regards to rolling out COVID-19 vaccination programs
x) Please send copies of the minutes of any meetings relevant to this decision-making process

Response

A. The CMO plays a key role in working with the Department of Health and Social Care public health agencies, and the National Health Service, to convert the scientific advice from expert committees into a policy response. He is responsible for managing clinical operations, liaising between the administration and medical staff, and ensuring that patients receive the highest standard of medical care. The CMO Directorate is responsible for:

  • providing policy advice to Scottish Ministers on healthcare and public health;
  • leading medical and public health professionals to improve the mental and physical wellbeing of people in Scotland;
  • providing clinical advice on professional standards and guidelines;
  • investing in research, particularly related to the NHS; and
  • encouraging young people to take up jobs in the medical and public health sector.

B. In recommending COVID-19 vaccine roll out to children aged 12-15 in Scotland consideration was given to publicly available information. The information available to us publicly, shows that there is a very small risk that a very small number of children will suffer side effects as with any vaccine.

While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance the Chief Medical Officer’s office does not have some of the information you have requested. However, you may wish to contact the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) who may be able to help you. The Chief Medical Officer’s office does not have the information you have asked for, some of this information may be held by the Scottish Government.

This is a formal notice under section 17(1) of FOISA that the Chief Medical does not have the information you have requested.

C. While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance the Chief Medical Officer’s office does not have some of the information you have requested. However, you may wish to contact the UK Government who are responsible for any contractual agreements with Pfizer suppliers. The Chief Medical Officer’s office does not have the information you have asked for because there is no contractual agreement between the CMO or the Scottish Government and BioNTech/Pfizer.

This is a formal notice under section 17(1) of FOISA that the Chief Medical Officer does not have the information you have requested, some of this information may be held by the Scottish Government.

About FOI
The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses.

Contact

Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road
Edinburgh
EH1 3DG

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