Gov’t develops Covid-19 protocols for students

The Malawi Government – through the Ministries of Education and Health – has developed Covid-19 protocols for students who are returning to their respective schools on January 4, 2022.

According to a statement co-signed by Secretary for Education, Chikondano Mussa and her counterpart at Health, Dr Charles Mwansambo, says with the new academic calendar and schools opening, they have issued guidelines to be followed by students, staff and their institutions.

Dr Charles Mwansambo

It said all students in day schools (public, private primary, secondary, colleges and universities) that are feeling unwell should visit their nearest health facilities for check up.

“The health service provider will determine whether the student should be referred for Covid 19 test or not,” it said.

Students who have tested positive are required to be isolated for a period of 10 days at home before reporting to school, it said.

During the course of the term, it said, if the student feels unwell, they will be isolated and referred to a health service provider who will determine whether the student is positive or not and if found positive will be isolated.

The statement further said the same is applied to those in boarding schools that prior to their reporting to schools that those feeling unwell should visit the nearest health facilities and if found positive are required to stay at home for 10 days before reporting to school.

When students arrive on the first day, they will be screened for symptoms of Covid 19 and those found will be referred to a health provider for determination.

If found, it said, students will be required to be isolated with the institution for 10 days before returning for class.

The ministries reminded the education institutions to provide necessary psychosocial support to the students and staff who have been found positive to Covid 19.

And also all should adhere to preventive measures like masking up, washing hands with soap, sanitizing and social distancing.

The ministries also urged students to receive their Pfizer jabs at the nearest health facilities if they are in ages of 12 to 17 years.

Vaccines provide protection against developing severe disease, risk of hospitalization and deaths due to COVID-19, it said.

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