Bangladesh is going to vaccinate students below 18: Health Minister

They will be offered Pfizer and Moderna Covid-19 vaccines, Zahid Maleque says.

“Any vaccine dose can be administered to students over 18 but those below 18 can be vaccinated with Pfizer and Moderna jabs following the World Health Organization’s (WHO) directives depending on the availability of vaccine doses,” said Health Minister Zahid Maleque on Saturday.

The minister revealed the information while talking to reporters after visiting comprehensive examination centres for the Nursing and Midwifery Course atTejgaon Government Girls College on Saturday.

“An inter-ministerial meeting will be held on Sunday. The meeting is expected to decide whether the school students will be vaccinated against Covid-19,” he said.

Zahid Maleque also said: “We think that students over 18 can receive any vaccine but in the case of those who are above 12, we have to follow countries like the US and the UK where students are given Pfizer and Moderna vaccines.”

About 80% of teachers and students involved in medical treatment have been brought under vaccination campaigns, the minister added.

Those who are receiving their first jabs will get their second ones from September 7, and people have been asked to go to their respective vaccination centres to take their shots, he said.

Besides, orders have been placed to collect 165,000,000 doses of vaccines. Of these, 65,000,000 will come from China while the rest will come from WHO.

Maleque said: “The doses will likely arrive in the country within next January.”

He added steps are underway to recruit more nurses, and their numbers will be three times higher than physicians working in the health sector.

“Alongside physicians, nurses are performing their duties with sincerity and we’re trying to recruit more nurses to solve the manpower crisis,” he said.


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