The mass testing of Monaco’s students on their return to school on Monday has yielded important and reassuring data.

Of 4,201 pupils tested, only 77 were positive, with a reliability rate of 97.5 percent. The outcome is the equivalent of an infection rate of 1.8 percent.

When a test from a nasal swab proves positive, a PCR test is given at the Auditorium Rainier III, the national testing centre, to confirm the original result.

Children who test positive are sent home to parents and must stay out of school for 10 days from the test, or 10 days from the appearance of symptoms.

However, not all students were tested. A total off 14.6 percent of youngsters were not tested because their parents refused to allow it or because some children forgot to bring back their letter authorising the tests.

Twenty school staff tested positive and went into self-isolation.

The testing campaign is intended to isolate positive cases to minimise onward transmission.

PHOTO: Monaco Government Press Office