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General News of Thursday, 30 July 2020


Coronavirus: No need testing SHS students before going on vacation – Dr. Oko-Boye

Deputy Minister of Health, Dr. Bernard Oko-Boye play videoDeputy Minister of Health, Dr. Bernard Oko-Boye

Deputy Minister of Health, Dr. Bernard Oko-Boye, has said there is no need to test Senior High School (SHS) students who are currently in school for COVID-19 before they go home after their examinations.

He says being in school does not put the students at a higher risk of contracting the virus than their relatives who are at home.

Final years students and gold track students were made to return to school amidst the pandemic. The final year students were to prepare and write their final exam, the West African Senior Secondary Certificate Examination (WASSCE), while the gold-track students were to complete their academic year.

Though there were calls to test all the students before allowing them go back to school, the government said it was not possible, but rather put in place some safety protocols to be followed.

As the term nears completion and the final years writing their exam, there are fears that the students may return home with Covid-19 if they are not tested, especially when some schools have recorded some positive cases.

But speaking on TV3’s COVID-19 360 Wednesday, the deputy Health Minister told host Berla Mundi that students will not be tested before going home.

“We should not see them [students in school] as people with elevated risk, when I say elevated risk… like anybody who flies into the country, because the virus rate is high over there, that person comes from an elevated risk area, but for these kids their schools are within our jurisdiction, they came from us to school.

He maintained that unless the students show symptoms of the virus, there is no point wanting to test them before going home.

According to him, the rate of infection has so far shown to be “almost negligible” amongst the students while recovery rate is high, a reason he believes relatives should not entertain any fears.

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