Note: Recipient-submitted material; content authored by recipient, not ELC
Information current as of October 6, 2021

alert icon

To learn more about Palau’s school testing plans, visit their websiteexternal icon.

Management structure for school screening

The Palau Ministry of Health and Human Services (MHHS) and Ministry of Education (MOE) joint workgroup will work to implement activities in the National School COVID-19 Mitigation and Testing Plan, as approved by the National Emergency Committee. Both agencies are utilizing existing School Health Program structure to support activities in support of COVID-19 prevention and mitigation in the K-12 school setting.

Support provided to school districts

The Palau School COVID-19 Mitigation and Testing Plan was developed using CDC guidance and considers the phased response to COVID-19 as detailed in the Palau National COVID-19 Mitigation Plan. During Phase 1 of the National Plan (COVID-19 is uncontrolled outside of Palau and/or imported cases detected in travelers or their immediate contacts), weekly pooled testing for schools is optional. In Phase 2, when community transmission has been identified, weekly pooled testing will become required at all schools in affected areas. Should Palau enter Phase 3, when community transmission is widespread and the healthcare system is failing, schools will close and shift to virtual learning. Increased testing will be critical in phase 4 when schools are preparing to re-open and resume in-school learning. As of October 13, 2021, Palau has only reported imported cases of COVID-19 in travelers to the country and no cases have been identified through surveillance or community testing efforts. The MHHS in currently piloting school testing in several schools, with the aim to prepare all schools for school testing if community transmission is identified, and weekly testing becomes necessary.