Italy likely to offer anti-COVID boosters to entire population
All Italians are likely to be offered booster shots for the coronavirus vaccine to help contain the spread of new variants, a government official said on Tuesday.
"It is most likely that a third dose will be necessary for everybody," Deputy Health Minister Pierpaolo Sileri told Radio Capital.
His remarks echoed what the president of the national health institute ISS, Silvio Brusaferro, had said 24 hours earlier about the need for the vaccinated to get another jab.
Italy is now limiting booster shots to patients with other serious medical conditions, people over 60 and health workers.
"I imagine the rest of the population [will follow] from January," Sileri said.
Italy has been one of the countries worst affected by the coronavirus pandemic, with almost 132,000 deaths reported since February 2020.
To date, almost 44.5 million Italians, or 82.3 percent of those over the age of 12, have been fully vaccinated, and 1.1 million have received booster shots.
To boost vaccination rates, Rome authorities have already adopted one of the world's strictest anti-COVID regimes, with mandatory coronavirus certificates for all workers.
The certificates are available to everyone who is vaccinated or recently recovered from COVID-19, but can also be obtained by getting a negative test, at the worker's own expense.
© 2021 AFP