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Wear mask and maintain social distancing to stop COVID-19 spread in school: Experts

COVID-19: How to stay safe amid school reopening? Here's what to know

The virus has not gone anywhere and the country is still reeling under a huge threat of COVID-19 reinfection. Here are a few things to keep in mind before you start going back to school again.

Written by Satata Karmakar |Updated : March 23, 2021 12:02 PM IST

With the mass rollout of the vaccination against novel coronavirus in the country, the government has decided to reopen the schools nationwide. But, the virus has not gone anywhere and the country is still reeling under a huge threat of COVID-19 reinfection. All you need to do right now is to take all the possible precautionary measures to curb the virus's spread. In a recent study, the experts have revealed that wearing masks, maintaining social distancing and frequent hand-washing can keep in-school Covid-19 transmission low.

The new study which could bring huge relief to parents was conducted in the US state of Missouri and it was primarily aimed at identifying ways to keep elementary and secondary schools open and safe during the pandemic.

These Preventive Efforts Can Curb COVID-19 Spread Effectively

According to the researchers, the Covid-19 prevention efforts can significantly curb the spread of SARS-CoV-2 among students, teachers, and staff.

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Speaking to the media, senior author Johanna Salzer, a veterinary medical officer with the CDC's National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases, said "This work is imperative because keeping kids in school provides not only educational enrichment but also social, psychological, and emotional health benefits, particularly for students who rely on school-based services for nutritional, physical and mental health support".

The pilot study involved 57 schools in the Pattonville School District in St. Louis County and the Springfield Public School District in Greene County in southwest Missouri, as well as two private schools in St. Louis County. All schools in the pilot study required students, teachers, staff, and visitors to wear masks while on campus or buses.

Other Safety Measure That You Need To Follow

COVID-19 is still lingering and following the basic protocols is extremely important now. Some of these are:

1. Hand hygiene One of the best ways to stay safe from the COVID-19 virus is by keeping your hands clean.

2. Deep cleaning of facilities in the school premises is a must.

3. Maintain social distancing even when you are in the classrooms.

4. Keep a close check on your daily symptoms. Never ignore any of the warning signs which have been listed by the health experts.

5. Try to keep yourself safe while using the washrooms carry a sanitizer always.

6. Do not eat outside foods which have been kept open for a long time.

"Schools can operate safely during a pandemic when prevention strategies are followed," said one of the study's leading researchers, Jason Newland, Professor at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

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