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Back-to-school Covid-19 helpline launched in Dubai

Back-to-school Covid-19 helpline launched in Dubai

The 24×7 helpline operated by the Dubai Health Authority will address concerns regarding the virus and precautionary measures in place to safeguard against it

Dubai Health Authority

With schools across the country reopening this week, the Dubai Health Authority announced late on Sunday night that it had launched a dedicated, 24×7, back-to-school Covid-19 helpline – 800 588 – to address concerns arising from the pandemic.

A statement from Dubai Media Office added that the helpline “is a mechanism to provide parents, students and school staff in private schools in Dubai with timely information through an effective and convenient communication channel.”

Fatima Al Khaja, Director of the Customer Happiness Department at the Dubai Health Authority, said that the helpline would provide information on precautionary measures in place to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

It will also provide information on measures and protocols that private schools in the emirate have undertaken while complying with the directives of the Supreme Committee for Crisis and Disaster Management and the emirates’ education regulator – Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA).

The KHDA has issued an extensive list protocols that all private schools were mandated to follow in order to re-open their premises to accept students and staff onto their campuses.

Read: KHDA issues list of protocols for reopening of private schools in Dubai

Students returning to the campus of private schools in Dubai do not need to undergo a Covid-19 PCR test. However, all staff were required to undergo the PCR test, the cost of which was borne by the government.

The Dubai Health Authority organised a workshop for 400 medical and administrative staff last week, which focussed on standards that school clinics need to adhere to, and the role of a dedicated health and safety employee in schools to ensure follow-up, monitoring and compliance of all standards.

Read also: Students in Dubai can opt for distance learning for first term – KHDA

The UAE’s Ministry of Education meanwhile has outlined contingency plans in case of a spike in the Covid-19 infection rate.

Among the measures that will be in place, in the event of an ‘extreme risk’ to safety, which is when a minimum of 36 cases per 100,000 population are detected in seven days, schools will be closed, halting in-class lessons. In such an event, full-time distance learning will be enforced.

Read more: UAE schools to close if Covid-19 cases spike – education ministry

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