Send doctors to schools to address concerns: expert

The head of the Medical Association, Choi Kin, said officials should consider sending doctors to schools to directly address any concerns that teachers and parents may have about the BioNTech vaccine.

His comment on Sunday comes after the government decided last week to further expand the city’s vaccination scheme by allowing people as young as 12 years old to get the BioNTech jabs.

The Education Secretary, Kevin Yeung, said the government is now considering how to go about the plan, adding that one option would be to send outreach teams to schools to administer the shots.

Choi told RTHK that it’s very important to vaccinate school children, saying the current low vaccine take-up rate could put Hong Kong at risk of another serious outbreak.

“So… lowering the age group is important, but whether it will be successful or not will depend a lot on the citizens’ will as well as on the government’s effort,” he said.

The head of the Medical Association said it’s very important to let parents understand the importance of vaccination, and more work needs to be done to allay their concerns about the jabs.

“We need to spend a lot of time to convince parents to allow their children to get vaccinated, and this will need the help of general practitioners and family doctors to convince parents,” Choi said.

“One suggestion is to get family doctors to go to the schools to meet the parents, teachers and students to explain the necessity of vaccination”.

He also urged the administration to improve transparency when it comes to reporting on suspected vaccine-related deaths, saying its crucial to put people’s minds at ease.

As of Saturday, the government said less than 17 percent of the local population has been fully vaccinated.