Originally published by RT.com.
Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett announced on Thursday that the country will require children as young as three to have a Covid-19 test before entering public places despite the success of the nation’s vaccination program.
The new measure will come into effect from next Wednesday. The government will fund the testing of children aged three to 11, ensuring youngsters present a negative result before entering public places, such as hotels, gyms, pools or schools.
The Israeli government has already implemented a Covid-19 pass for citizens aged 12 and older, ordering them to present a Green Pass that shows if they’ve had a vaccination, tested negative or recently recovered from the virus.
To meet the increased demand, Israel’s national blood and medical emergency service, Magen David Adom, has opened 120 rapid antigen testing centers, where residents can quickly find out their status. For those aged 12 and older, a test costs 52 shekels ($16.14) and, if a negative result is returned, individuals receive a Green Pass that is valid for 24 hours.
Israel has extended its double dose vaccination program to individuals aged 12 and older, with individuals who are 60 and over able to get a third booster vaccination. The government is currently weighing extending the booster jab to younger age groups, with a decision expected to be announced next week.
Despite the success of the vaccine rollout in Israel, the country has suffered a resurgence of cases. As of Thursday, the Israeli health ministry has recorded a total of 921,083 cases and 6,593 deaths since the pandemic began, with 5,964 new infections in the past 24 hours.
The use of the Green Pass has been extended until December 31, 2021, and must be presented when entering public places, alongside ID documentation, such as a driving license.
This post was originally published by RT.com.