A school in Dubai will host a free Covid-19 vaccination drive for students aged 12 and above across the country, as well as their parents.

Eligible students and parents, along with Gems group teachers and employees, can receive the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine at Gems Al Barsha National School on October 17 and 18.

The Dubai Health Authority (DHA), Dubai Youth Council and Gems Education have partnered for the drive.

Dr Manal Mohammad Taryam, consultant and chief executive officer, Primary Health Care Services Sector – DHA, said: “We have been delighted by the support of the UAE as a whole to the authority’s efforts to protect our citizens with a major vaccination drive.

“We now wish to ensure that the younger members of our community are similarly protected against the Covid-19 virus.

“Together we are all responsible – no matter what our age.”

The UAE was among the first countries globally to announce vaccination for school students.

Reem AlMusabbeh, marketing coordinator and board member, Dubai Youth Council, said: “Our schools have been extremely supportive in the national drive to have as many people vaccinated against Covid-19 as possible. That focus is now very much on the youth of our nation.”

Till date, Gems has helped more than 13,000 of its eligible students aged 12 to 18 get the jab. It expects to “substantially increase” this with the latest drive. All its eligible teachers have already been vaccinated, the group said in a Press statement.

Elmarie Venter, chief operations officer at GEMS Education, said: “We are opening this opportunity for all students and their parents across the emirates, not just from GEMS. We are grateful to the DHA and Dubai Youth Council for their positive action in working with us and other school groups to ensure our communities are kept as safe and healthy as possible through this mass vaccination drive and other initiatives.”

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