(CMC) — Guyana’s Minister of Health Dr Frank Anthony says even as discussions are ongoing with education officials on the reopening of schools, the Government plans to utilise an existing immunisation law to inoculate children against COVID-19.
He said a joint committee, which comprises representatives from his ministry as well as the Ministry of Education, have been examining how to keep children safe in school.
“We have been in discussions with the Ministry of Education and its top leadership and one of the things that was discussed at the last meeting, pertaining to when we get vaccines, is how we are going to roll that out within the school system, so those discussions are still ongoing,” he said during Wednesday’s COVID-19 update.
The Public Health (School Children) Immunization Act 1974 provides for the immunisation of people seeking entry into schools and daycare centres against certain communicable diseases.
“We will be giving those vaccines in accordance with that particular law,” Anthony said.
Globally, two vaccines have been approved for children between the ages of 12 and 18 — Moderna and Pfizer.
“We are actively trying to get those vaccines into Guyana so we can administer it to our children,” the health minister said.
He said recently there have been reports of some countries using Sinopharm to vaccinate their younger population. However, he said, the Guyana Government is awaiting more data on this.
Government is hoping to reopen schools for face-to-face learning in September. Teachers are being encouraged to lead by example and take their vaccines to protect themselves and their students.