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Kansas governor reiterates COVID-19 safety precautions will keep kids in school, healthy

FILE - In this July 2020, file photo, Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly wears a protective mask during a...
FILE - In this July 2020, file photo, Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly wears a protective mask during a news conference in Topeka. Johnson County District Judge David Hauber, in Kansas' most populous county, has struck down as unconstitutional a state law requiring unusually speedy legal hearings for people challenging mask requirements and other COVID restrictions. (Evert Nelson/The Topeka Capital-Journal via AP, File)((Evert Nelson/The Topeka Capital-Journal via AP, File))
Published: Sep. 1, 2021 at 3:04 PM CDT
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WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - Kansas Governor Laura Kelly was in Wichita on Wednesday giving an update on the state’s response to COVID-19.

Local doctors joined the governor at Wesley Children’s Hospital to talk about what they’re seeing right now with the latest coronavirus surge that’s filling hospital beds.

The governor and doctors reiterated the need for people to take precautions to stop the spread of the highly contagious delta variant - the keys to keeping schools open and children healthy.

“We got our kids back into school by listening to health professionals, by masking up, by implementing public health protocols and getting vaccinated and we’ll keep them there by following the best health practices,” said Gov. Kelly.

Gov. Kelly said hospital beds are full, hospitals are having trouble finding enough staff and COVID rates in Kansas are high or higher than what the state saw a year ago.

One of the doctors speaking Wednesday was Fredonia physician and Wilson County Health Officer Dr. Jennifer Bacani McKenney.

“I worry about my children every day, I worry about your children every day. The same science we teach our kids in schools is being ignored in our communities. This science shows vaccines and masks are safe and effective,” said Dr. Bacani McKenney.

Gov. Kelly announced a new “Safe Classrooms Workgroup” which will be co-chaired by McKenney and Wichita pediatrician Dr. Stephanie Kuhlman.

The two doctors will work with other health professionals on developing guidelines for schools, teachers and parents, and issue weekly reports with information on things like testing, masking and even schools with active outbreaks.

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