In Russia, 18,597 people with coronavirus infection were hospitalized over the past day, which is 3.55% less than on February 11.

The daily increase in new cases of COVID-19 in the country amounted to 203,766 - the largest number was detected in St. Petersburg (21,689), Moscow (14,336) and the Moscow Region (9,146).

During this time, 112,658 patients have fully recovered, 729 people have died.

The total number of coronavirus cases registered in Russia has reached 13,935,560.

According to the Moscow operational headquarters for monitoring the situation with coronavirus, 1377 patients with COVID-19 were hospitalized in the capital per day.

“625 people are on ventilators,” the statement said.

As of February 11, the herd immunity rate in the country is 61.9%.

81,505,771 people completed a full course of vaccination against coronavirus.

Meanwhile, the Russian government has allocated more than 400 million rubles to study the genome of the Omicron coronavirus strain.

The corresponding order was signed by Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin. 

“We need to continue further study of circulating strains.

Timely research is needed to effectively monitor changes in the situation,” he noted at a meeting of the Presidium of the Coordinating Council to Combat the Spread of Coronavirus in early February.   

Funds from the reserve fund of the Cabinet of Ministers will be directed to the institutions of Rospotrebnadzor and will be used to purchase equipment, enzymes and consumables "for the qualitative determination of ribonucleic acid (RNA) chains of the Omicron genovariant."

It is expected that funding will allow to examine at least 57.2 thousand samples.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Health of Russia announced the conversion of the high-tech clinic of the National Medical Research Center for Children's Health into the Center for Infectious Diseases amid an increase in cases of coronavirus infection among children.

Since February 10, they have been providing round-the-clock medical care to children with suspected or confirmed COVID-19.

“Five floors, 330 beds, 30 of which are resuscitation rooms, eight operating rooms in case of need for emergency surgical care, specialists of the highest competence, expert-class equipment – ​​everything is ready for the treatment of COVID-19 in children,” the Ministry of Health stressed.

In addition, from February 21 in Russia, minors in Russia will be able to independently receive a printed certificate of vaccination against COVID-19, medical contraindications to vaccination or a past illness.

To obtain a certificate, persons under the age of 14 must present a birth certificate to an MFC employee.

The corresponding document is published on the official Internet portal of legal information.

Professor of Virology, Chief Researcher at the Gamaleya Center Anatoly Altshtein expressed the opinion that in the coming days the incidence of COVID-19 in Moscow will decline. 

“We are somewhere at the peak.

I think that in the coming days there will be a decline.

It is very difficult to predict with an accuracy of one or two days.

The decrease is not very large, but gradually it increases.

And all this will drag on for quite a long time - February and March, ”he said in an interview with Moscow 24.

At the same time, the specialist noted that most residents of the capital have a mild form of coronavirus infection, and there are enough beds for severe covid patients in the city, but the situation remains tense.

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The specialist recalled that vaccination and compliance with sanitary and epidemiological measures remain the main protection against the virus.

In turn, the virologist, chief researcher at the Gamaleya Center, Academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences Felix Ershov admitted that in the future, the coronavirus will behave similarly to the influenza virus: it will remain in the population, but will not be so dangerous.

According to him, today there is already evidence that Omicron is replacing more dangerous strains, occupying their niche.

“By the summer, I think the pandemic will be over, Omicron will do its job.

Now in some countries the situation is favorable, ”said the virologist in a conversation with the Vzglyad newspaper.

At the same time, Alexander Gorelov, deputy director for research at the Central Research Institute of Epidemiology of Rospotrebnadzor, said that the subspecies of the omicron strain VA.2 cannot be more severe than the original version. 

“Indeed, the BA.2 line is more contagious than the original omicron.

But it cannot be said that the infection caused by the “omicron” BA.2 will be more severe than the original version of the omicron strain, ”TASS quotes him.

Gorelov noted that the second wave recorded in some countries after a decrease in the incidence rate is due precisely to the predominance of the subspecies BA.2.