Teachers should be priority group for COVID-19 jabs, says WHO

WION Web Team
NEW DELHI Published: Aug 30, 2021, 02:00 PM(IST)

A teacher getting tested for coronavirus by a health official in Madrid, Spain Photograph:( AFP )

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Measures to ensure that schools can stay open throughout the pandemic "include offering teachers and other school staff the COVID-19 vaccine as part of target population groups in national vaccination plans," the UN agencies wrote in a statement

Teachers and school staff should be among the groups prioritised for COVID-19 vaccinations so that schools in Europe and Central Asia can stay open, said the World Health Organization (WHO) and Unicef.

Measures to ensure that schools can stay open throughout the pandemic "include offering teachers and other school staff the COVID-19 vaccine as part of target population groups in national vaccination plans," the UN agencies wrote in a statement.

The recommendation, already made by a group of WHO experts in November 2020 before the vaccination roll-out, should be done "while ensuring vaccination of vulnerable populations," the statement said.

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"This is of paramount importance for children's education, mental health and social skills, for schools to help equip our children to be happy and productive members of society," the director of the WHO European region, Hans Kluge, said in the statement.
"The pandemic has caused the most catastrophic disruption to education in history," he added.

The agencies also urged countries to vaccinate children over the age of 12, who have underlying medical conditions that put them at greater risk of severe COVID-19 disease.

Also, it recalled the importance of measures to improve the school environment during the pandemic, including better ventilation, smaller class sizes, social distancing and regular COVID-19 testing for children and staff.

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