Staunton, August 31 `-- Officials in Daghestan who were savagely criticized for their failures during the first wave of the pandemic have found a way to make their republic look better this time around and avoid such Moscow attacks: they are counting those with fake certificates as having been vaccinated (kavkazr.com/a/polovina-vaktsinirovannyh-kupila-sertifikat-rukovoditelj-proekta-monitor-patsienta-ob-epidemii-v-dagestane/31431345.html).
That approach not only means that the coronavirus will continue to spread more rapidly than the reported vaccination rates suggest but further undermine confidence in official pronouncements about the pandemic, something that is becoming a problem not just with regard to Moscow but concerning regional governments as well (babr24.com/irk/?IDE=218320).
As the pandemic ebbs and flows, Russia is experiencing a pattern other countries have as well. While its daily infection number is down – to 17,813 – its death toll remains high –795 over the last 24 hours, reflecting the fact that infections are a leading indicator and deaths a following one (t.me/COVID2019_official/3498 and regnum.ru/news/society/3352534.html).
A new SuperJob poll finds that Russians with children or living parents are slightly more likely to say they have been vaccinated or plan to than those without children or parents who are still alive. Those who have both children and live parents are the most likely to (superjob.ru/research/articles/113033/chasche-vakciniruyutsya-ot-covid-19-te/).
Russia’s largest teachers’ union is complaining about long lines and the absence of choice of vaccine for instructors as they seek to get vaccinated before the start of school (regnum.ru/news/3357929.html).Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov says that Vladimir Putin, who has been vaccinated, has been tested and found to have a sufficient number of antibodies to protect him (regnum.ru/news/3357800.html).
And Russian health minister Mikhail Murashko has warned that those who do get the infection and recover face higher risks of deaths for six months after apparently recovering fully. These risks are especially great among pensioners, he added (regnum.ru/news/3357737.html).
Meanwhile, in other pandemic-related developments in Russia today,
· With regard to the current wave, Ukraine is doing relatively better than Russia, something Kyiv has reported and that Moscow commentators are casting doubt upon (rosbalt.ru/world/2021/08/31/1918835.html).
· Just how much power university rectors have to compel students to get vaccinated in order to use dormitories, attend class in person, or even get degrees is being debated as the heads of various higher educational institutions adopt different policies (rosbalt.ru/piter/2021/08/30/1918645.html).
· Russian commentators are upset that Slovak officials have decided to end offering the Sputnik-5 vaccine because of low demand. Moscow writers suggest that politics is at work rather than public opinion (echo.msk.ru/news/2895704-echo.html).