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Jun 10, 2022

Pediatric Vaccinations for Primary School Children Going Slow

For the past two weeks, the Ministry of Health and Wellness in collaboration with the Ministry of Education has had health personnel visit primary schools across the country to administer COVID pediatric vaccines to children ages five to eleven. Those young students had to produce a consent form from their parents for them to get a first jab, which provides an initial layer of protection against the deadly virus.  But like the adult vaccination, there is some hesitation on the part of parents and the number of children getting vaccinated is low. Education Minister Francis Fonseca says it has been a challenging process.


Francis Fonseca

Francis Fonseca, Minister of Education

“It’s a challenging process, it’s an ongoing process. We work very closely with the Ministry of Health and Wellness. What we have done, from our part, what we are able to do is make all of our schools accessible. We have worked with our managing authorities across the country, work with the union to make sure that our teachers are there to support the students; make sure the classrooms are open. We work with the Ministry of Health to set up a schedule across the country for the vaccination of these five to eleven-year-old students. So it is going. I think it is going a little slow and that’s what I expected. When it comes to small children, you would appreciate that parents are very cautious, they are very concerned. So there is a wait and see approach in terms of the vaccine. But what’s important is that it is available and that parents and our school communities know that they can access it if they need it. We believe firmly that if our students are vaccinated that provides additional protection for them, for our teachers and our school community. So we certainly hope between now and the opening of school in August that more of our students at that level will get vaccinated because that presents an opportunity for us to have less interruptions in the school academic year.”

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