Dr. Sani Aliyu, Coordinator, PTF has said that it was unnecessary to subject resuming students to the coronavirus test.
He said it would amount to an unnecessary financial burden on parents to ask students to provide COVID-19 test as condition for resuming schools.
He said what was more important was for schools to enforce compliance with the non-pharmaceutical measures and be vigilant in monitoring children and quickly isolating the them on showing the first suspected sign of COVID.
He said, “If you do a PCR test today, the greatest value it has is if it is positive. If it is negative, that negative result applies to the time the sample was taken. Beyond that, 48, 72 hours three days, four days, you are tested, you can still come up with a positive result.
“So when it comes to students in schools, we encourage schools to be vigilant to make sure they monitor children that are sick, check temperature, to make sure they have access to hand-washing facilities, in terms of non-pharmaceutical interventions, and to have a very low threshold for making sure that a child is excluded at the first sign that they might have COVID.
“In general children do not present symptoms, but they may still have respiratory symptoms. Even in the absence of COVID, a child having a rashes, having diarrhoea or having a cough, ideally should be excluded from school if he is unwell, so that other children do not catch the diseases.
“These are sensitive precautions that we will urge schools to take. It will be an unnecessary burden on parents, to be honest, for students to be tested for COVID by PCR or whatever because, it has value only for that material time.”