Staunton, Oct. 13 – As the rate of new vaccinations has slowed and fears grow that a new lockdown may be the only way to stop the upsurge in the pandemic, Anastasiya Tatulova, public ombudsman for small and mid-sized businesses has proposed one surefire way to force people to get vaccinated: require proof of vaccination for anyone to buy vodka.
She made that proposal on a Moscow radio station even as QR codes are being used to restrict access to a variety of public places and as efforts to get people to vaccinate by offering other prizes seem to be failing (govoritmoskva.ru/news/290881/, business-gazeta.ru/article/525497 and regnum.ru/news/3396650.html).
But surveys show that QR codes are deeply unpopular both with businesses who must enforce entrance requirements and the public, and it is entirely possible that making having this sign of having been vaccinated would lead to a public explosion, a possibility that makes this idea likely dead on arrival (superjob.ru/research/articles/113117/vvod-qr-kodov-schitaet-neobhodimym-lish-kazhdyj-chetvertyj-moskvich/
Meanwhile, in other pandemic-related developments in Russia today,
· A new study has found that the coronavirus has led to the rise of a new group of millionaires in Russia who have made fortunes by supplying medical equipment to hospitals (regnum.ru/news/3396370.html).
· Investigators say they will complete research on a shot that will provide protection against both the flu and covid in the near future, and the health ministry has given permission for testing a nasal anti-covid medication (regnum.ru/news/3396669.html and regnum.ru/news/3396846.html).
· The Kremlin has announced that Vladimir Putin will attend the Valdai Forum but said that there will be restrictions on access because of the pandemic (regnum.ru/news/3396957.html).
· As of today, just over 51 million Russians have received at least one dose of the vaccine (regnum.ru/news/3396996.html).
· Tests show that Sputnik-Lite is 70 percent effective against the delta strain, and its makers say that it will soon be registered in 30 countries and produced in more than ten (regnum.ru/news/3397113.html and regnum.ru/news/3397163.html).
· Forty-eight percent of those getting the covid vaccine have already been vaccinated against the flu, an indication that those willing to get one kind of shots are ready to get another (superjob.ru/research/articles/113113/kazhdyj-vtoroj-vakcinirovannyj-ot-koronavirusa-uzhe-privilsya-i-ot-grippa/).