Italy will launch a massive, free coronavirus vaccination program early next year, Health Minister Roberto Speranza told parliament on Wednesday.
"The purchase of vaccines will be centralized. The vaccine cannot be a privilege and should be available to everyone, " Speranza said.
He also noted that the government does not intend to introduce mandatory vaccination.
The Minister confirmed that Italy would be provided with sufficient doses of the vaccine to vaccinate the entire population (about 60 million people) and create a strategic reserve. "We assume that all vaccines require repeated use. We do not yet have scientific information about the exact time frame for maintaining immunity [after the introduction of the vaccine], " Speranza said.