Mass Vaccinations Start Feb. 11 in Florence


The Mandela Forum set up for Coronavirus vaccinations

Doctors called to the Mandela Forum (Piazza Enrico Berlinguer) in the Campo di Marte neighborhood, designated Florence’s COVID-19 vaccination hub, will begin giving doses to a select number of residents beginning February 11, 2021.  The initial group comprises teachers, essential workers, those with health problems, police and members of the armed forces between the ages of 18 and 55; a reservation is necessary and can be made at this link.  The newly arrived AstraZeneca vaccine, recommended for this age group, is the one that has been chosen to be administered.  Once those falling into that category are vaccinated, all others in the same age group will be next.  Mayor Dario Nardella said, “the plan is to vaccinate 2,400 residents a day.”

Florence has a population of 367,000.  Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines have been given to health workers and nursing home patients starting December 27, 2020, followed by doses of Moderna–with first priority assigned to health workers who transport patients to hospitals–beginning on January 17, 2021.

Simultaneously, those 80 and over who live at home will be called by their family doctors to local clinics to receive a COVID-19 vaccine. Under this plan, it is estimated that 15,000 seniors of a total number of 370,000 can be vaccinated daily.  There are 2,400 family doctors in greater Florence.

On February 7, 668 new COVID-19 infections were reported in Tuscany out of 12,628 tests carried out, a slight decrease from the 708 reported the day before, February 6.  Up to this date, 149,214 vaccine doses have been administered in Tuscany to a population of 3.7 million.  The new campaign will speed up distribution.

At the same time, as Florence and Tuscany are experiencing a slight upswing in contagions bringing the region into orange zone status, Mayor Nardella has signed a new ordinance designed to restrict crowds in the city center.

Effective immediately, people cannot gather in the streets and squares in and around Borgo La Croce, Piazza Sant’Ambrogio, Via Pietrapiana, Via Giuseppe Verdi and Via dell’Agnolo from 6 to 10 pm on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.  In addition, residents are no longer allowed to hang out in front of bars, pubs and cafés.  Those caught doing so will receive a fine ranging from €400 to €1000.  (rosanna cirigliano)

To read more in Italian, visit Florence’s La Repubblica news site.