Optimising COVID-19 vaccination as a critical control strategy to mitigate SARS-C0V-2 transmission alongside other infection prevention and control strategies within schools in Zimbabwe

Grant Murewanhema, Solomon Mukwenha, Tafadzwa Dzinamarira*, Zindoga Mukandavire, Diego Cuadros, Roda Madziva, Innocent Chingombe, Munyaradzi Mapingure, Helena Herrera, Godfrey Musuka

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the learning of millions of children across the globe. Since March 2020 when the first cases of COVID-19 were reported in Zimbabwe, a country, like many others, has gone through periods of closing and re-opening of schools as part of the national COVID-19 control and mitigation measures. Schools promote the social, mental, physical, and moral development of children. With this viewpoint, the authors argue that schools should not be closed to provide a measured and efficient response to the threats posed by the COVID-19 epi-demic. Rather, infection prevention and control strategies, including vaccination of learners and teachers and surveillance in schools should be heightened. The use of multiple prevention strategies discussed in this viewpoint has shown that when outbreaks in school settings are ad-equately managed, the transmission usually is low. This, alongside their positive impact on the health, development and wellbeing of children, would justify that they are maintained open.
Original languageEnglish
Article number1481
Number of pages10
JournalVaccines
Volume9
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Dec 2021

Keywords

  • COVID-19
  • vaccination
  • schools
  • Zimbabwe

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