Vatican City (Reuters)-Pope Francis said on Saturday that he plans to be vaccinated against COVID-19 as early as next week and urges everyone to get vaccinated not only to protect their own lives, but also the lives of others .
In an interview with Canadian television station Canale 5, the pope said: “I believe that everyone should be vaccinated. This is a moral choice because you are betting on your health and your life, but at the same time you are betting on your life. other̵
The Vatican is the smallest independent county in the world, with approximately 450 people including Pope Francis. The country has stated that it will soon launch its own vaccination campaign against the coronavirus.
The Pope said: “Next week, we will start here in the Vatican. I have booked myself. It must be done.”
When Pope Francis, 84, fell ill in a young man in his hometown of Argentina, part of his lungs was removed, which made him likely to get the disease.
The Vatican City said last week that it expects to receive a sufficient dose of COVID-19 vaccination in the next few days to vaccinate all residents and workers living outside Rome.
As part of the vaccination plan, the Vatican stated that it has purchased an ultra-cold refrigerator to store the dose, indicating that it will use a vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech, which must be stored at approximately 70 degrees Celsius (94 degrees Fahrenheit).
After the interview excerpts were released, the official Vatican News website reported that the Pope’s personal doctor Fabrizio Soccorsi died of complications from COVID-19.
Soccorsi, 78, is receiving cancer treatment in the hospital. Since 2015, he has been the Pope’s doctor.
Reporting by Crispian Balmer; Writing by Giulio Piovaccari; Editing by Peter Graff and Chizu Nomiyama