ATHENS – Children in Greece who haven't been vaccinated against COVID-19 as the pandemic re-surges will eventually catch the virus, cautioned a member of the New Democracy government's advisory team of scientists and doctors.
“Children will be infected at some point if they are not vaccinated. By Christmas we will have a very extensive spread of the virus. All children will be exposed, sooner or later,” Nikos Sypsas, an Infectious Diseases Professor at the Athens School of Medicine told SKAI TV.
It wasn't said if he had told Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis or the Health Ministry or if the panel recommended against opening schools, which resumed classes on Sept. 13 amid worries there could be an outbreak.
He said parents should not worry about possible side effects – which he said are “infinitesimal” and should insure their children are protected from the Coronavirus that is spreading again because of the dominant Delta Variant from India, anti-vaxxers and people not wearing masks nor staying safe distances from each other.
“We know that there are now many references in the literature for children who have long COVID, long-term complications from the virus, such as extreme fatigue, depression, disorders in various organs such as the lungs and heart,” he said, the virus' effect far worse than any possible side effect.
He didn't say what age group is most susceptible as the government has offered vaccinations to the 12-17 year-old category but that it could be extended to even lower ages if the pandemic still lingers.
The Education Ministry changed a stance from vowing to keep schools open in any case and not return to remote learning as happened during lockdowns to saying they would be closed if more than half the students contract the disease.