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Healthcare is a “moral obligation”, the pope has said, as he denounced the “baseless information” on which people are deciding to decline covid vaccines.

In what the Associated Press described as his strongest words yet calling for people to take vaccines, Pope Francis said individuals had a responsibility to care for themselves and that this translated into “respect for the health of those around us”.

“Health care is a moral obligation,” the agency quoted him as saying.

Francis’s comments came during a speech to ambassadors accredited to the Holy See, an annual event in which he sets out the Vatican’s foreign policy goals for the year.

Pope Francis meets diplomats accredited to the Holy See.
Pope Francis meets diplomats accredited to the Holy See. Photograph: Vatican Media Handout/EPA

Ideological divides were discouraging people from getting vaccinated, the pope said. “Frequently people let themselves be influenced by the ideology of the moment, often bolstered by baseless information or poorly documented facts,” he said, calling for the adoption of a “reality therapy” to correct this distortion.

“Vaccines are not a magical means of healing, yet surely they represent, in addition to other treatments that need to be developed, the most reasonable solution for the prevention of the disease,” he added.

Some Catholics, including some conservative US bishops and cardinals, have claimed vaccines based on research that used cells derived from aborted fetuses were immoral, and have refused to take them.

The Vatican’s doctrine office, however, has said it is “morally acceptable” for Catholics to receive Covid-19 vaccines based on research that used cells derived from aborted fetuses.

Pope Francis and Emeritus Pope Benedict XVI have been fully vaccinated with Pfizer-BioNTech shots, according to the Vatican.

Source : https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2022/jan/10/covid-live-news-40-of-israel-could-be-infected-in-current-wave-germany-to-study-rapid-antigen-test-reliability-for-omicron?page=with:block-61dc4cdb8f08ad63cf674945

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