Epidemiologist: British 'exceptionalism' behind school facemask uproar

2 January 2022, 14:10 | Updated: 3 January 2022, 08:22

By Seán Hickey

A sense of exceptionalism has been built in the UK around the need for serious Covid measures to fight the pandemic, according to this expert.

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Amid news that schoolchildren will be required to wear face coverings in classrooms to stop the spread of the Omicron variant, Matthew Wright spoke to Dr Deepti Gurdasani of Queen Mary University of London.

"Should the mask mandate have remained in schools throughout the pandemic?" Matthew wondered. "Absolutely" Dr Gurdasani asserted.

The epidemiologist claimed that "we are not mitigating infections in schools.

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"We are forcing parents who are infected to send their children to classrooms, which is ridiculous."

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She was baffled that the UK is "one of the few countries in the world" not currently imposing further measures to slow the spread of coronavirus in schools.

Matthew couldn't wrap his head around why England has been so slow to put measures such as face coverings in place in schools: "What is it about it the UK that just doesn't get it?"

"There's an exceptionalism that has been built in the UK and it is also prevalent in some of the scientific community and paediatrics community," Dr Gurdasani claimed, sharing her own bewilderment.

"We are fighting a huge disinformation campaign that opposes masks in schools at the detriment of children."