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No requirement for students, teachers to bring COVID-19 test reports, says Punjab health dept

No educational institute had the authority to request coronavirus test reports from teachers or students, Primary & Secondary Health Care Department (P&SHD) Secretary Captain (r) Muhammad Usman Younis said. The News/Files

LAHORE: There is no requirement for students or teachers to bring reports of their COVID-19 test ahead of the reopening of educational institutes, Punjab’s provincial healthcare department said Sunday.

School, colleges and universities are reopening from Monday which were ordered to close in March to curb the spread of COVID-19.

The government had decided to resume educational activities from September 15 after virus cases recorded a steady decline in the country during the past few weeks. The health authorities have issued safety measures for the management of educational institutions and students to be followed during classes.

In a clarification letter to the relevant institutions, Primary & Secondary Health Care Department (P&SHD) Secretary Captain (r) Muhammad Usman Younis said the government of Punjab did not lay down any prerequisite for teachers or students to bring their coronavirus test reports.

The tests would, however, be carried out by the provincial government itself once the education institutes reopened — set for September 15, Younis added, noting that a comprehensive strategy had already been developed for testing in schools, colleges, and universities.

Moreover, a random sampling would be done once in a fortnight from every educational institute located in districts marked as high risk for the deadly coronavirus, he noted.

The secretary further underlined that there was no requirement for any tests, except random sampling, at the official level. No educational institute had the authority to request coronavirus test reports from teachers or students, he said, adding that it was only for the government to do so.

Parents, teachers and students may call 1033 to obtain details about coronavirus symptoms and other information. Alternatively, information may also be obtained through the P&SHD social media accounts.

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