Top ultra-Orthodox rabbis set to order community to vaccinate against COVID-19

Top ultra-Orthodox Rabbis Chaim Kanievsky, Gershon Edelstein and Shalom Cohen will order their community to vaccinate against COVID-19 if they can, Hebrew-language media reports, after doubts were raised about whether the Haredi leaders would make that move.

The three spiritual leaders reportedly asked for a medical opinion on the matter by Rabbi Elimelech Firer, who heads a prominent charitable medical organization.

Firer concludes that “anyone who has the option of vaccinating should do it” because the vaccine has been proven safe using standard, accepted methods.

He recommends those with allergies to consult their doctor before vaccinating, and recommends against inoculating kids under 16 years old, since the vaccine hasn’t yet been tested on them.