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19 Feb, 2021 15:38

As Russia ramps up its mass vaccination program, Moscow Mayor Sobyanin claims Covid-19 pandemic ‘on decline’ in capital

As Russia ramps up its mass vaccination program, Moscow Mayor Sobyanin claims Covid-19 pandemic ‘on decline’ in capital

Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobyanin has revealed his belief that the Covid-19 pandemic is “on the decline” in the capital, noting that the healthcare system has “withstood extreme strain” thanks to a decade-long modernization process.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, Russia has officially confirmed 4,139,031 cases, with almost a quarter (964,609) of which were detected in Moscow, despite only having around 10 percent of the country’s population.

Last year, when the virus first arrived in Russia, the capital was initially much harder hit than anywhere else. In November, Sobyanin suggested that approximately 50 percent of Moscow residents already had immunity to Covid-19. In the months since, with the rollout of a mass vaccination program and the virus spreading throughout the city, that figure is now undoubtedly much higher.

Also on rt.com Moscow mayor lifts ban on nightclubs and drops curfew for bars amid falling coronavirus cases across Russia

On Friday, Moscow recorded just 1,972 daily cases – a significant drop from 3,115 a month prior and 5,028 a month before that.
Writing on his blog, the mayor revealed that Moscow doctors never had to face a shortage of medical equipment, praising the city’s foresight to prepare years ago.

“Back in 2011-13, we completely re-equipped city hospitals and clinics in Moscow,” he wrote. “Everything was changed – from thermometers to X-rays and ultrasound machines. The most modern equipment – surgical robots, tomographs, angiographs – was purchased in volume for the first time.”

Specifically, he revealed that the new modern tomographs had “saved thousands of human lives” through early detection of pneumonia – a common effect of Covid-19. The mayor also noted how the city decided to renew high-tech equipment in 2019, with hospitals due to receive 6,000 units of mammograms, ultrasound machines, and other new technology by 2023.

On January 27, following improvements in Covid-19 figures, Sobyanin issued an order lifting restrictions on bars, restaurants, and nightclubs, which were previously required to shut at 11pm. At the time, the mayor revealed that infection rates had fallen to such an extent that over 50 percent of hospital beds were free for the first time since mid-June 2020.

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