Staunton, June 11 – For the sixth day in a row, the number of coronavirus infections in Moscow rose with the figures now exceeding those of January; and as a result of that trend and upticks in other places including in particular Buryatia, the Transbaikal and Leningrad Oblast, the number of infections for Russia as a whole rose to a new high in the current upsurge.
The situation in the Russian capital is dire and set to get worse, as even its officials admit. One reason is that the coefficient of infection which indicates how many additional people will get the infection for each one who now has it stands at 1.6 in the capital as compared to 1.2 for the country as a whole (newizv.ru/news/society/11-06-2021/koeffitsient-zarazheniy-covid-19-v-moskve-dostig-maksimuma-s-sentyabrya).
That Moscow figure is far above those reported a year ago and suggests that the large numbers the Russian capital is experiencing now may be succeeded by even larger numbers in the coming days and weeks, especially as the city government does not plan to significantly tighten restrictions (regnum.ru/news/3295011.html
znak.com/2021-06-11/sobyanin_v_moskve_uhudshaetsya_situaciya_s_koronavirusom_pik_ozhidaetsya_v_iyune_iyule). He has reopened field hospitals but says there is some hope because half of the city’s people are now immune (mskagency.ru/materials/3120489regnum.ru/news/3295006.html).
But some of the infections there and elsewhere in Russia are of new strains against which existing therapies are proving less effective even though the strains are resulting in fewer deaths (versia.ru/zabolevaemost-covid-19-poshla-v-rost-a-izvestnye-metody-terapii-teryayut-yeffektivnost-iz-za-novyx-shtammov
A new VTsIOM poll reported that 60 percent of Russians favor vaccinations and 17 percent say they have already been vaccinated, both of which are far higher than the actual numbers others have been reporting but consistent with Kremlin appeals (wciom.ru/analytical-reviews/analiticheskii-obzor/vakcinacija-ot-koronavirusa-monitoring-1).
At the same time, the Russian government’s statistical arm, Rosstat, revised its figures for coronavirus deaths last year up from 104,800 to 144,691, another example of the problems with Russian statistics on the pandemic (rosstat.gov.ru/folder/11110/document/13269).
Meanwhile, in other pandemic-related developments in Russia today,
· Officials are working on plans to organize vaccine tourism after Vladimir Putin called for making arrangements for such individuals to pay for the shots (svpressa.ru/health/article/301040/).
· Russians who have been immunized now face a less stringent testing procedure if and when they travel abroad and re-enter the country (meduza.io/news/2021/06/11/vaktsinirovannym-ot-kovida-rossiyanam-razreshat-ne-sdavat-ptsr-testy-pri-vozvraschenii-iz-za-rubezha).
· The influential and politically active Russian Orthodox archbishop of Baku has died from a coronavirus infection (ahilla.ru/skonchalsya-bakinskij-arhiepiskop/).