OMSK, RUSSIA OCTOBER 9, 2021: Cemetery workers in protective clothing bury people who have died from causes related to COVID-19 in Novo Yuzhnoye Cemetery. Yevgeny Sofiychuk / TASS (Photo by Yevgeny Sofiychuk TASS via Getty Images)
Yevgeny Sofiychuk | TASS | Getty Images
Russia has hit a dismal new record in its Covid-19 pandemic, with the number of daily deaths from the virus hitting a new high.
Russia reported 28,190 new coronavirus cases and 973 deaths from Covid on Tuesday, a new record number of daily deaths, according to data from the government’s coronavirus task force. In total, Russia has recorded over 7.8 million cases of the virus and over 218,000 deaths.
Russian Health Minister Mikhail Murashko warned sharply on Tuesday of the public health crisis in Russia, telling a cabinet meeting that the incidence of Covid in Russia had increased by 16% over the past week and that the rate of growth in some regions is more than 30% have. .
Russia has about 255,000 beds for Covid patients, of which about 235,000 are occupied, Murashko said, according to the TASS news agency.
Russia is desperately trying to increase vaccination rates in the country, but many members of the public have been reluctant to take up Covid vaccination, mainly the Russian-made Sputnik-V vaccine, often despite the offer of incentives such as money, shopping vouchers and gift cards. and easy access to facilities like walk-in vaccination centers.
So far, however, the Kremlin has refused to make Covid vaccination mandatory for the general public, despite a multitude of workers in multiple regions and in multiple sectors such as retail, healthcare, and education who are now or are required to have a Covid vaccine risk losing their jobs.
Continue reading: Putin says Russia will not make Covid vaccines mandatory, but skepticism remains an issue
Still, according to Our World in Data, vaccination numbers remain low as around 31% of Russia’s 144 million population are fully vaccinated.
The frustration at the sluggish adoption of Covid vaccines is palpable in Russia, with President Vladimir Putin making numerous attempts to promote the vaccine’s benefits to the reluctant public.
Those efforts continued on Tuesday when Putin reportedly told a meeting of State Duma (parliament) deputies that they would have to work harder to increase vaccination rates in Russia.
“We need to persevere and patiently work with people, explaining to them all the benefits associated with preventing this dangerous disease,” he said, told TASS.
Still, there is no evidence that Russia is ready to implement a nationwide lockdown with the power to lock down Russian regions where restrictions vary widely.
In August 2020, Russia became one of the first countries in the world to approve and introduce a Covid vaccine. Without public restraint, Russia would have been able to vaccinate far more people by now.
Reluctance was seen as a result of concerns about the safety and effectiveness of Sputnik V, particularly as Russia approved the syringe before the clinical trials were completed, which aroused suspicion in the international scientific community.
However, the Sputnik-V vaccine was found to be 91.6% effective in preventing the development of Covid, according to peer-reviewed results from its late-stage clinical study published in February in the medical journal The Lancet.
People walk across Red Square on a sunny autumn day in Moscow on October 9, 2021.
DIMITAR DILKOFF | AFP | Getty Images
Even so, a poll published in March by Russian electoral center Levada found that 62% of people did not want to receive the vaccine, with 18- to 24-year-olds being the most reluctant.
The latest data from Levada, released in early September, shows that skepticism about the vaccine remains high but has decreased over the summer. 52% of the Russians surveyed did not want to be vaccinated with a Russian vaccine. In the August survey of 1,619 people, 14% said they were ready to be vaccinated and around a third said they had already been vaccinated.
More than half of the Russians surveyed (55%) said they were not afraid of being infected with the coronavirus, indicators that have barely changed since the beginning of 2021 despite recent warnings about the spread of the more virulent Delta variant.
Continue reading: Fully vaccinated people are still infected with Covid. Experts explain why
Muraschko warned on Tuesday that the youth were no longer on guard against Covid and told the cabinet meeting that “we have seen patients up to 30 years of age who are in intensive care with serious complications”.
“Young age is therefore no insurance against diseases and their complications today,” he told the TASS news agency.
No love is lost between Russia and its neighbor Ukraine in the face of the illegal annexation of Crimea in 2014 and the subsequent pro-Russian uprising in eastern Ukraine, but both countries share difficulties in overcoming the Covid crisis.
Like Russia, Ukraine recorded a near-record-breaking number of deaths in the past 24 hours, reporting 471 coronavirus-related deaths and very close to the record number of 481 daily, the Ministry of Health reported on Wednesday.
– CNBC’s Hadley Gamble will host a panel with Russian President Vladimir Putin and CEOs from BP, TotalEnergies, ExxonMobil and Daimler at Russian Energy Week. Watch live at 1pm Moscow time / 11am London time on Wednesday October 13th.