Italy to boost vaccination of teenagers ahead of school reopening
ROME — Italy’s government has urged regions to prioritize COVID-19 vaccinations for those aged between 12 and 18, in an effort to extend the campaign before schools and sports activities restart across the country.
In a letter addressed to regional governors, seen by Reuters, the government’s special COVID Commissioner Francesco Paolo Figliuolo on Wednesday called on the regions to vaccinate youngsters without them requiring a reservation.
“In order to fast-track vaccinations among the 12 to 18-year-olds … you should give them priority even if they don’t have a booking,” Figliuolo wrote, saying the new policy should apply from Aug. 16.
Italy’s 20 regional governments have front-line responsibility for organizing and carrying out inoculations.
Some 40% of around 4.6 million Italians aged below 19 have had at least one vaccine dose and around 23% are fully inoculated, latest government data show.
Moderna and Pfizer vaccines are the only COVID-19 shots approved for adolescents in Italy.
Prime Minister Mario Draghi pledged last week that the school year would begin in September with face-to-face classes, and he has made it mandatory for teachers to have proof of immunity from the virus.
As of August 11, some 66% of Italians had received at least one shot against COVID-19, of whom 56% were fully vaccinated. The figures are broadly in line with those of most continental European countries.
Subscribe to our daily newsletter
The Inquirer Foundation supports our healthcare frontliners and is still accepting cash donations to be deposited at Banco de Oro (BDO) current account #007960018860 or donate through PayMaya using this link .
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.