Coronavirus: children aged three and above must wear masks, authorities say

Dr Farida Al Hosani, official spokeswoman of the UAE health sector, said masks are crucial in preventing the spread of Covid-19

Children aged three and above must wear face masks in public, authorities have said.

Dr Farida Al Hosani, official spokeswoman of the UAE health sector, said masks are crucial in preventing the spread of the coronavirus.

Medical grade masks offer the best protection, she said, during an online discussion about Covid-19 organised by the Ministry of Justice, in co-operation with the Abu Dhabi Public Health Centre (ADPHC).

“Children over the age of three should wear face masks, while those under that age should wear face shields,” state news agency Wam quoted her as saying.

She said parents should also avoid taking their children to crowded areas, “especially playgrounds”.

"The Covid-19 pandemic has affected citizens and residents, and changed lifestyles, habits and the way people interact with each other within the Emirati community,” said Dr Al Hosani.

“It also made families and the community adopt new healthy lifestyles and encouraged children and the youth to take responsibilities and be independent, and changed several negative lifestyles."

Dr Al Hosani said it was important to take the vaccine to reduce infection and protect everyone, particularly the elderly and children, adding that the UAE plans to “enlarge the scope of people taking the vaccine” to reach herd immunity.

Children were long thought to be unaffected by the virus but figures tell a different story.

Between February 2020 and March 2021, Covid-19 killed at least 852 of Brazil's children up to the age of nine, including 518 babies under one year old, figures from the Brazilian Ministry of Health revealed.

Authorities there are now encouraging the use of face masks and hand sanitizer among children.

Meanwhile, on Sunday, authorities revealed the Sinopharm vaccine is more than 90 per cent effective at preventing hospitalisation.

According to a recent study, conducted by ADPHC, the vast majority of people infected after completing the vaccine suffer only mild symptoms and do not require hospital treatment.

The vaccine was found to be 93 per cent effective in preventing hospitalisation and 95 per cent effective against admission to intensive care.

No deaths were recorded among people who received “all doses required,” Abu Dhabi Media Office said.

Dr Farida Al Hosani, official spokeswoman of the UAE health sector, said it is vital people are fully vaccinated before travelling outside of the country. National Media Council
Dr Farida Al Hosani said masks are crucial in preventing the spread of the coronavirus. Courtesy: National Media Council

Updated: April 19, 2021 03:21 PM

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