Staunton, February 14 – Vladimir Putin argues that Russia has been more successful in mobilizing its healthcare system and pharmaceutical industry than Europe and the US have been in making use of their own, but some observers point to the slow pace of vaccine production and of the inoculation program as evidence to the contrary (regnum.ru/news/3190307.html and rosbalt.ru/piter/2021/02/12/1887319.html).
In fact, they say, the pace of vaccination is so slow that Russia will not meet the goals the government has announced and problems at drug research efforts mean that development and testing for reliability and safety of new vaccines to meet new strains of the virus will take a year or more (ura.news/news/1052471757).
Today, Russian officials reported registering 14,185 new cases and 430 new deaths from the coronavirus, both new lows since the fall but enough in the latter case to push the cumulative total of deaths above 80,000 as the pandemic continues to ebb and flow across Russia (t.me/COVID2019_official/2479regnum.ru/news/society/3188415.html).
The declines in Moscow were especially marked with only 58 residents of the capital registered as dying from the coronavirus, a figure that may be especially low because of the weekend when registration reports come in more slowly (versia.ru/v-rossii-za-sutki-vyyavleno-14-185-novyx-sluchaev-zabolevaniya-covid-19-i-430-letalnyx-isxodov).
Nonetheless, there is a widespread feeling in Russia that the worst of the pandemic is now in the past, although two reports cast doubt on that optimism. On the one hand, analysts say pandemic losses will depress Russian GDP for at least the next 15 years (krizis-kopilka.ru/archives/83685).
And on the other, medical experts say that global warming means that more coronavirus-type diseases are almost certain to emerge in China and spread to the rest of the world, including Russia, in the coming years (rosbalt.ru/moscow/2021/02/14/1887437.html).