Vatican City, Jan 2, 2021 / 09:00 am
Coronavirus vaccines are scheduled to arrive in Vatican City next week, according to the Vatican director of health and hygiene.
In a statement released Jan. 2, the head of the Vatican health service, Dr. Andrea Arcangeli, said that the Vatican has purchased a low temperature refrigerator to store the vaccine and expects to begin administering vaccinations in the second half of January in the atrium of Paul VI Hall.
“Priority will be given to health and public safety personnel, to the elderly and to personnel most frequently in contact with the public,” he said.
The Vatican health service director added that Vatican City State expects to receive enough vaccine doses in the second week of January to cover the needs of the Holy See and the Vatican City State.
Vatican City State, the world’s smallest independent nation-state, has a population of only around 800 people, but together with the Holy See, the sovereign entity that predates it, it employed 4,618 people in 2019.
In an interview with Vatican News last month, Arcangeli said the Pfizer vaccine was expected to be made available to Vatican City residents, employees and their family members over the age of 18 in the first months of 2021.
“We believe it is very important that even in our small community a vaccination campaign against the virus responsible for COVID-19 is started as soon as possible,” he said.
“In fact, only through widespread and widespread immunization of the population can real benefits in terms of public health be obtained to gain control of the pandemic.”