Pediatricians not in favour of offline conduct of exams

Non-immunized children can form a group of super spreaders, says the president of IAP Kerala

The state chapter of the Indian Academy of Pediatrics (IAP) has warned that central and state administration exams should only be conducted in this pandemic period if the authorities are 100% confident in ensuring social distance and other COVID-19 protocols.

“Given the current scenario, it is best not to take exams offline as much as possible. The authorities must be completely sure of the security officers if they are to go ahead and administer the exams, ”said M. Narayanan, president of IAP, Kerala.

“The non-immunized children can form a group of super spreaders, especially if there are mutant strains that spread at lightning speed. We can only hold the exams in offline mode if the government and authorities are confident they will break the chain and guarantee other pandemic protocols, ”he said.

Dr. Narayanan stated that it was up to governments to decide whether to take such a risk, Dr. Narayanan points out that previous experience had shown that it may not be possible to ensure full compliance with the protocols. “The ball is now with the government and they have to make an appropriate decision,” he said.

Dr. Narayanan pointed out that there should be no lapses if the authorities decide to conduct the offline exam, saying that teaching and non-teaching staff should be immunized before the start of the exams.

“This would help control the possibility of students becoming infected while receiving the invigilators’ question papers and answer sheets or while interacting with them,” he said.

Kerala’s IAP had encountered violations of protocols, especially in aspects related to the transportation of students from their home to the exam centers and crowding out students to discuss their issues in the exams held earlier during the pandemic crisis.

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