With talk of infections for COVID-19 all around the world rising as a trend, the New York Post reports that Russia is experiencing record COVID-19 cases in spite of claims that the numbers have stabilized and may be in decline.
Russia on Tuesday reported record high daily coronavirus cases and deaths, pushing total infections to 1,326,178, but authorities said they do not plan to impose lockdowns across the vast country.
Anna Popova, head of the consumer safety watchdog Rospotrebnadzor, said on Tuesday Russia saw no need to impose restrictions on economic activity in response to the spike in cases.
“Despite a growing number of cases, today in Russia we are not talking about blocking the economy, suspending some business activities, some sectors of the economy, because we see no reason to do this,” Popova said in comments carried by Russian news agencies.
Her comments come a day after the Kremlin said Russia could afford to be more flexible in its response to COVID-19 than earlier this year when it imposed a lockdown.
Speaking to reporters on Monday, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Russia had more room for maneuver than earlier in the pandemic because of better treatment, more hospital beds and a tried and tested system to tackle the virus.
Deputy Health Minister Oleg Gridnev said on Tuesday that nearly 90 percent of the hospital beds dedicated to COVID-19 patients were currently occupied, TASS news agency reported. He added, however, that 20 percent of the patients hospitalized had light symptoms and could be sent home.
Alexander Gorelov, deputy director of a research institute at Rospotrebnadzor, said he expected the number of coronavirus infections to increase for about another 20 days, the RIA news agency reported.
Moscow, the capital, has been the hardest hit by COVID-19. The city of nearly 13 million, which recorded 4,618 new cases on Tuesday, has opened two temporary hospitals and ordered businesses to have at least 30 percent of staff working remotely. (source)