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Saturday, October 8, 2022

Covid-19 vaccination optional for students aged under 12

By Minh Thao

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HCMC – Many schools in HCMC have affirmed that Covid-19 vaccinations are not compulsory for children aged 5 to 11.

Recent rumors spread among parents in HCMC that children are required to get vaccinated before getting back to schools on August 22.

Pham Trung Huu, principal of Pham Van Hai Primary School in Binh Chanh District, denied the rumors, saying that the Covid vaccination of children who are 5 to 11 years old is optional, not mandatory.

There would be no prejudice against unvaccinated students, he said.

However, his school encourages families to have their kids vaccinated when the new school year starts, but children will get their shots only when their parents or guardians give consent.

In fact, no schools in HCMC require children from five to under 12 to get vaccinated against Covid before they return to school.

Last year, Rang Dong 4 Kindergarten in District 6 surveyed parents to see whether they allow their children to get vaccinated in the second semester. The school also confirmed that unvaccinated students could go to school as usual.

According to the Ministry of Health, Covid hasn’t been on the list of infectious diseases that require the mandatory use of vaccines and medical biologicals for children of a certain age.

At a press conference in June 2022, Deputy Minister of Health Nguyen Thi Lien Huong said that Covid vaccination of children was highly recommended, but not compulsory.

In addition, most countries worldwide have asked people to get vaccinated on a voluntary basis. Only some countries required vaccinations for certain people such as military personnel, but not for children.

HCMC has had over 165,000 children getting the first, second, and third shots of Covid vaccines since the vaccination campaign for children aged 5 to 17 began two weeks ago. The vaccination rate among children 5 to 11 has exceeded 50% until now.

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