Pope Francis to receive COVID-19 vaccine this week

Pope Francis will receive his COVID-19 vaccine shot this week, declaring it an “ethical duty”.

He told Italian news outlet TG5: “Everyone should get the vaccine. Without a vaccine, you are playing with health, life, but also with the health of others.”

The Pope’s personal doctor died just days ago from complications of the coronavirus. Fabrizio Soccorsi was hospitalised on Boxing Day for a previous oncological disease. It is not known when he was last in close contact with the Pope before his death on Saturday.

The Vatican City is preparing its COVID-19 vaccine rollout this week. The city expects to receive enough doses to inoculate all 450 residents and workers.

Ultra-cold fridges have been moved into the Holy City to store the jabs developed by Pfizer and BioNTech.