CentraCare and Carris Health are recommending children start the school year wearing masks indoors, regardless of vaccination status.
On Friday, CentraCare released a statement saying, “As we are approaching a new school year, our communities are again facing the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. It is well documented that this pandemic is taking a huge toll on our children’s learning as well as their mental and physical health.
“CentraCare and Carris Health, together with the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) urge all students, teachers, staff, and visitors in K-12 school buildings to wear masks indoors regardless of vaccination status in order to protect those who cannot yet be vaccinated (under the age of 12) or who remain at higher risk because of immunocompromised status or other conditions.
“Masking is the best opportunity to keep kids healthy from all respiratory infections and keep them in school, especially when many districts will not be offering distance learning options.
“Our hope is that this message is met with understanding for the care and concern we have for the communities we serve,” said Dr. George Morris, Incident Commander for CentraCare’s COVID-19 response and a family medicine and sports medicine physician. “We recommend that all staff and students who are 2 years or older wear face masks unless medical or developmental conditions prohibit their use.”
CentraCare encourages all Minnesota school districts and private school leaders to adopt requirements consistent with this informed public health guidance. With these protective measures in place, our hope is that everyone will have a safe, in-person learning experience during the 2021-2022 school year.”