Dubai: Accompanied by their parents and guardians, hundreds of Dubai students, aged between 12-16 years, trooped to a vaccination centre in Oud Metha on Friday to get their first dose of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine
The vaccination campaign to all children above the age of 12 was launched on Sunday by the Ministry of Health and Prevention (MoHaP). Elmarie Venter, chief operations and marketing Officer at GEMS Education told Gulf News they have already started the vaccination drive. “More than 42,000 GEMS students are eligible to be vaccinated and 8,000 will be having this done this week.”
“Our number one priority will always be the health and safety of our school communities and we firmly believe that with this campaign of vaccinations for all students aged 12 and over, we can take a big step towards all our pupils safely returning to the classroom. We are thankful for the support our parents have provided throughout this drive,” she added.
Venter added GEMS will continue the vaccination campaign throughout summer “to ensure schools remain as safe as possible. She added the 1,600 newly-hired teachers in August will also be vaccinated to join 14,700 GEMS teachers and school support staff who have already received the vaccine.
Pfizer-BioNTech Covid vaccine
Meanwhile, the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) tweeted on Sunday that parents could book appointments for their children aged 12-15 to get the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid vaccine. Several studies have showed that the Pfizer vaccine is 100 per cent effective in kids aged 12-15 years old.
The DHA also reminded parents that they should provide a complete medical history of their child and disclose if their child has a weakened immune system and/or was sick or had a fever in the last three days before taking the jab.
Indian student Mishal Faraz, 14, Grade 9 at The Winchester School, Jebel Ali, told Gulf News: “I got the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine today and I feel so relieved and absolutely ecstatic. I’ve been a distance learner since March 2020 but now that I’m vaccinated, my family and I feel confident about returning to school when the new academic session starts in September.
“Over the moon and grateful to the rulers of the UAE for taking such good care of all citizens and residents. Also, thank you to GEMS Education and my school for arranging prompt vaccination for all eligible students,” she added.