Dr. Abdul Latif Al-Khal, head of the National Strategic Group to address the virus (Covid-19) and head of the Infectious Diseases Department at Hamad Medical Corporation, confirmed that the recorded infections among school students and their workers are still very limited, and that the general situation is currently reassuring and does not cause concern, stressing the continuation of precautionary measures. Schools are strictly enforced by the Ministry of Education and Higher Education in cooperation with the Ministry of Public Health.
This came during the joint press conference between the Ministries of Public Health and Education and Higher Education to review the latest developments and developments of the Corona virus, and the efforts made to start a safe school year in the country.
Dr. Al-Khal pointed out that all teachers and workers in public and private schools were examined before starting the study, and it was found that the rate of injuries is less than 2 percent of them only, which calls for reassurance .. adding, “Now, after two weeks of study, the infection rate among teachers And students are still limited, which means the success of the strict measures that were followed in schools. “
He pointed out that most of the injuries recorded between teachers and students were from the community and not schools, and that the majority of the injured students do not suffer from any symptoms or have mild symptoms.
He explained that a number of classes were closed in some schools after it was discovered that a student or a teacher had an injury, as well as disrupting a limited number of schools because of injuries in a number of classes or among a number of teachers .. He said, “The percentage of classes that were disrupted Very simple yet, when compared to the number of classes and schools in the country. “
The head of the national strategy group to address the virus (Covid-19) and the head of the infectious diseases department at HMC emphasized that the Ministry of Public Health, in cooperation with the Ministry of Education and Higher Education, is closely monitoring the situation with regard to the spread of the virus and ensuring that precautionary measures are effectively applied in educational institutions.
He also pointed out that there are rapid response teams from the Public Health Department at the Ministry of Health that immediately conduct surveys of contacts, including students and teachers, make the necessary checks, and take appropriate decisions regarding stopping studies in the classroom or in the school.
He revealed that the Ministry of Public Health will periodically conduct random checks for students and teachers throughout the country through schools and universities, in addition to starting in the near future to conduct tests on saliva for young students without the need to swab the nose and throat, which will facilitate conducting these checks as easily and quickly as possible.
Dr. Al-Khal recommended parents to alert their children to the importance of adhering to preventive precautions while they are at school and not to send their children to it if they suffer from a high temperature or have symptoms of cold and cold .. stressing the need to do a corona examination for children before returning to school, in case they appeared on them Cold and cold symptoms.
He also advised all family members, whether elderly or those with chronic diseases, to leave a safe distance inside the house with children, as well as to wear masks while they are close and to keep disinfecting hands and surfaces frequently, which is an increase in caution .. indicating that some children may contract the virus without showing symptoms They have.
Dr. Al-Khal warned parents not to take their children outside the home without necessity and to avoid social gatherings as much as possible, as it is one of the most important causes of the spread of the virus in society.
It also recommended that parents give permission to the school to examine their children through random surveys that will be carried out by the Ministry of Health for the sake of the public interest.
Regarding the use of saliva to examine corona, he explained that the PCR examination is currently approved in Qatar and the world, but studies have proven the feasibility of using saliva that gives results similar to those taken through swabs … indicating that laboratory experiments in Qatar and other countries in the world have proven that there is a congruence. Significant results are between the two types of examination.
In response to a question about random checks for students in schools, he drew attention to the importance of this step to know the extent of virus activity among students and in society in general, which gives the Ministry of Public Health an opportunity to contain the virus, and to make appropriate recommendations regarding the school year.
Dr. Al-Khal emphasized that the Ministry of Public Health is currently making tremendous efforts to limit the aggravation of the epidemic with the approaching winter season .. and said, “Although the numbers currently recorded are somewhat small, it may lead to a large increase that requires medical care.”
He added that some current indicators are heading towards an increase, and this is worrying especially that we are heading to the winter season and it is known for cold diseases, and we fear that the situation will worsen, and we are trying with all efforts to prevent this from happening. .
On the general situation, the head of the National Strategy Group to address the virus (Covid-19) and the Head of the Infectious Diseases Department at Hamad Medical Corporation referred to two recent waves that occurred in a limited manner, the first at the beginning of August and the other at the beginning of September.
He explained that approximately 90 percent of these microwaves are due to foci between families to which the virus was transmitted from a family member, who in turn had picked up the virus from social gatherings that violated the conditions and did not adhere to the precautionary measures in terms of the number of invitees, the safe distance and wearing a mask.
He cautioned that the danger of these waves, despite their limitations, lies in reaching older people or those with chronic diseases, which may lead to serious complications in the event of infection with the virus among them .. calling on families to apply preventive precautions within the same house if one of the family members is from Elderly people or those suffering from chronic diseases.
On the efforts of the Ministry of Public Health to monitor the situation, he explained that the ministry is monitoring several indicators that show the extent of the virus’s spread in society, such as the percentage of positivity in the daily examinations that are made in the country .. He said, “The index was decreasing until the beginning of September, reaching 2.5 “Then it gradually increased until it reached 5 percent this week, due to social gatherings and lack of commitment to preventive measures.”
Dr. Al-Khal also indicated that one of the other indicators monitored by the Ministry is the percentage of positivity in the tests in every hundred random samples that are taken from healthy people who work in public places such as restaurants, malls, health workers, in addition to other places.
He stated that the data indicated that this percentage had fallen to 1 percent at the beginning of September and then increased to 3 percent last week .. He called on citizens and residents to be careful when going to public places and to avoid taking their children outside the home without it being necessary. .
Among the indicators that Dr. Al-Khal talked about is an indicator of positive testing among people who have symptoms of the virus and those who go for examination … indicating that the examination rate among them at the present time is about 13 percent.
In a related context, he pointed out that the Ministry of Public Health is also monitoring the percentage of positive testing among contacts of confirmed cases, which is currently approximately 8 percent, and said, “Most of the contacts who are found to be infected are often from the same family, and there is a recent increase in these rates compared to what they used to be.” At the beginning of September. “
He stressed the role of all community members in carrying out their responsibilities to besiege the Coronavirus, warning that indifference to one person may harm other members of society, whether they are from the same family or from other families.
For his part, Mr. Mohamed Al-Bishri, representative of the Ministry of Education and Higher Education, touched on the ministry’s direction based on the daily evaluation of the integrated education system since returning to schools in the first half of this September through direct and continuous coordination with the Ministry of Public Health .. indicating that the ministry decided to continue applying the system. Blended learning according to the approved percentage of work, which is thirty percent, with the application of all the accompanying precautions and precautions.
He pointed out that, starting next week, parents will be given a choice between continuing the blended learning path or switching to complete distance learning, in order to control the attendance and explanation mechanisms within the classroom, with an emphasis on recording students ’attendance and monitoring the days of absence, whether in blended education or education about After, as well as compulsory attendance when performing the test.
Al-Bishri called upon parents to make the final decision regarding the type of education, as it is linked to arrangements and coordination with transportation, safety and other matters and procedures.
The ministry stressed the need for everyone to take precautions and apply precautionary measures and apply social distancing in daily life to protect their families and to ensure the continuation of the educational process without obstacles.
Mr. Muhammad Al-Bishri emphasized the safety of the school environment, noting that the injuries that were recorded in some schools were found to have occurred outside them, after investigating the foci of these injuries through the protocols approved by the Ministry of Public Health, indicating that the injured caused the transmission of infection to the school community.
The Ministry pointed out that in the event that any infection is discovered, it will implement the followed protocol by coordinating with the Ministry of Public Health, including the directive not to attend any of the students who appear to have tested positive for the Coronavirus and to invite them to conduct swabs to detect the virus by the Ministry of Public Health.
The ministry stressed that in the event that a class or division in a school is closed, the parents of students in the classroom will be notified immediately by text messages by the school administration .. But in the event that the entire school is closed, this will be announced through the ministry according to The protocol currently followed.
The ministry confirmed that in the event of any increase in the number of injuries, it will be recommended to suspend classes and schools and transfer students to study remotely.
The Ministry renewed its call to community members not to pay attention to rumors and to refer to reliable sources to know the latest developments and developments regarding the status of the educational system in light of the spread of the Corona virus (Covid-19).
With regard to the details and precautionary measures that the ministry followed before the start of the school day for students before the first of September, the representative of the ministry, Mohamed Al-Bishri, indicated during the press conference that the ministry had circulated the precautionary measures for schools and coordinated with the administrative and school staff to implement all these measures, by verifying Download an application / precaution / for all employees in all schools in the State of Qatar, whether governmental or private schools.
He continued, “In addition, a corona (Covid-19) examination was conducted in coordination with the Ministry of Public Health for all administrative, educational and technical staff in all schools, before they embark on the first school day, and there will be continuous checks in the future.”
He pointed out that isolation rooms have been allocated in all schools in coordination with the Ministry of Public Health, and the names of those with chronic diseases, including students and employees, have been listed.
Mr. Al-Bishri explained that the Ministry of Education and Higher Education has provided temperature measurement devices for all schools, in addition to providing all personal hygiene supplies such as cleaners, sterilizers and tissues in all school facilities … as well as ensuring the permanent availability of nursing in all public and private schools.
He pointed out that, in order to ensure the application of safe social distancing in school buildings, floor stickers have been installed to clarify the safe distances, in addition to installing guidance and awareness tools to remind and educate students of the precautionary measures.
The students ’seats were securely redistributed according to the prescribed percentage, which does not exceed thirty percent per semester of the total absorptive capacity of the semester, in addition to making sure to achieve safe spacing between the teacher and students during the demonstration, by allocating a safe area for the teacher to move in and not as was followed Previously from the teacher passing between students.
Al-Bishri explained that the ministry has also safely equipped the sports hall and the inner courtyard of the schools, while ensuring the eligibility of all school outlets, including entrances and exits, in addition to repeated sterilization of classes and facilities in all schools, explaining that the sterilization will remain on an ongoing basis. In addition to ensuring good ventilation for the classroom periodically.
Regarding the procedures that the ministry followed with the start of the students ’school hours, Mr. Muhammad al-Bishri, the representative of the Ministry of Education and Higher Education, explained during the press conference that the ministry, with the beginning of the students’ return to their schools, made sure to organize the entrance of students to the school building and define the entrances to the school according to age groups, and set up a point for examining students At all entrances to the school, stressing that no student could enter the school building before checking his temperature.
The Ministry has also made sure that all employees and students adhere to wearing masks upon entering the school, and it has also been emphasized to avoid joint breakfast and not shake hands with either the educational staff or students.
Among the precautionary measures that the ministry followed with the start of studies as well, encouraging students and teachers to stay at home in case of illness, and assigning administrative supervisors to follow up on students ’commitment to the precautionary measures approved by the Ministries of Education and Higher Education and the Ministry of Public Health .. The ministry also stressed the commitment of students not to leave Separation, mixing and not involving others in the use of special tools for each student, avoiding the use of classroom equipment and educational aids, and not allowing parents, drivers or domestic workers to enter the school building.
Regarding the procedures for buses, which were followed in coordination with the Ministry of Transportation and Communications, Mr. Al-Bishri emphasized commitment to a limited number of students in one bus, allocating a specific seat for each student, and making sure to maintain a safe distance for students inside the bus … and ensuring continuous ventilation and sterilization of buses. School day after each trip, in addition to encouraging parents to transport students in private cars.
According to Al-Bishri, the Ministry has coordinated with the competent authorities to ensure that drivers adhere to precautionary measures, and drivers were previously quarantined for a period of 14 days before the start of the school year, in addition to periodically and continuously verifying that drivers are free from infection with the Coronavirus, by making periodic checks for them.
With regard to safety procedures for students before and with boarding the bus, he indicated that students are required to wear the muzzle before and throughout the student’s presence on the bus, and to sterilize hands continuously when boarding and disembarking .. as well as avoiding touching surfaces unnecessarily, and informing the supervisor about the bus if they feel symptoms or fatigue .
Regarding the duties of the bus supervisor, Al-Bishri explained that the supervisor is committed to measuring the temperature of students on a daily basis before boarding the bus, preventing students from boarding the bus if they feel fatigued or overheating, and notifying the school immediately upon discovering this .. The supervisor also makes sure that students are distributed in the seats Set them, and notify the school of any violation of safety procedures.
Regarding the procedures for dealing with suspected cases of students and employees, Mr. Muhammad al-Bishri, representative of the Ministry of Education and Higher Education, pointed out that there are joint operating rooms between the Ministry of Education and Higher Education and the Ministry of Public Health to follow up all groups of the educational community, including students, administrators, and teachers, and to coordinate between them in the event of discovering any case. Or injury.
With regard to the daily follow-up plan, he referred to the allocation of isolation rooms to isolate the injured, along with the allocation of the hotline to receive reports and the emphasis on following the instructions and not allowing the injured student or employee to return to school except by bringing a medical report approved by the Ministry of Public Health.
Regarding monitoring the implementation of all precautionary measures and the health situation in schools every day, Al-Bishri pointed out that there were / The normal rate is three times that. “
He mentioned that the percentage of closed schools does not exceed 1.5 percent of open schools, whether governmental or private .. As for the percentage of closed classes and classes inside schools, its percentage does not exceed 1.6 percent, while the attendance rate was between 60 to 80 percent, indicating that attendance did not It is not obligatory in the first two weeks of the beginning of the school year.