23rd August: Children over 12 years of age should wear face masks to combat the coronavirus pandemic, says WHO.
According to reports from The Guardian, The World Health Organization says children aged 12 and over should wear masks to help tackle the pandemic.
— World Health Organization (WHO) (@WHO) August 23, 2020
Masks should be worn when 1-meter distancing cannot be guaranteed and there is a widespread transmission, it advised.
It is the first time the WHO has issued guidance on masks for children and comes less than two weeks before pupils in England return to school.
However, the UK government has said that masks are “not recommended” for primary or secondary school children.
WHO’s guidance says ages 6 to 11 should wear masks on a risk-based approach. Factors such as transmission rates, the child’s ability to use the mask, and adequate adult supervision should all be taken into account.
Children aged five years and under should not be required to wear masks based on the safety and overall interest of the child.
UK’s education secretary Gavin Williamson, said this month that research by Public Health England indicated there was little risk of the virus being transmitted at school, but the agency subsequently stated that secondary school pupils were just as likely as adults to transmit the virus.
.@CMO_England makes clear the chances of children catching Covid-19 in school are "incredibly small”, with pupils more likely to suffer long term harms if they do not return to the classroom. #BacktoSchool https://t.co/WAKkkJIEaQ
— Department for Education (@educationgovuk) August 23, 2020
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