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Vatican museums to reopen with anti-coronavirus measures in place

SISTINE CHAPEL EXHIBIT
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Temperature scanners and mandatory face masks will make opening the museums possible

The Vatican Museums are putting into place new precautionary measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus in order to make it possible to reopen, according to a report by the Catholic News Agency (CNA).

To help prevent the spread of the virus, visitors will have their temperatures taken and be everyone will required to wear masks.

“For the incoming public, we are completing the installation of some thermal scanners for detecting temperature,” Bishop Fernando Vérgez Alzaga said in an interview published May 9 by L’Osservatore Romano.

“Clearly, it will not be possible to welcome large groups for a long time,” he said.

In addition to these precautions, reservations will be required to visit the museum, reported the CNA.

Museums in Italy will be allowed to reopen starting on May 18, in accordance with Phase 2 of the country’s coronavirus restrictions.  According to the CNA report, the Vatican Museums have not yet confirmed the exact date they plan on reopening. 

“If one thing this pandemic taught us is that we should avoid making predictions that go beyond two days,” said Bishop Vérgez.

Virtual tours of the Vatican Museums, which include  the Sistine Chapel, the Pio Clementino Museum, the Chiaramonti Museum, the New Wing, Raphael’s Rooms, the Niccoline Chapel, and the Room of the Chiaroscuri are available for free, online.  

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