Moscow is facing the greatest risk among Russian regions over the spread of the coronavirus infection, Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin told Rossiya-1 TV channel on Sunday, TASS reported.
"As for Moscow, we are in the highest risk group because a huge number of people have transited through Moscow or have been overseas," Sobyanin said, noting that many Muscovites had contracted the virus.
Moscow’s authorities have been taking the toughest decisions to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, the mayor stressed. "We have made a decision on mobilizing a maximum possible number of hospitals to fight the coronavirus," he said, noting that nearly 20,000 beds in regional, federal and private clinics have been organized for coronavirus patients.
A total self-isolation regime for citizens of all ages has been in place in Moscow since March 29. Shops, except food stores and those selling articles of daily necessity and pet supplies, theaters, restaurants, cafes, bars, fitness centers, beauty parlors and recreation centers have been shut down. People are barred from visiting parks and holding entertainment events. Schools across the country have switched to online learning.
Violators of the self-isolation regime face a fine of up to 5,000 rubles ($65). However, fines will not be charged until the rules of movement in the city are adopted. No pass system has been introduced so far.
In late December 2019, Chinese officials notified the World Health Organization (WHO) about the outbreak of a previously unknown pneumonia in the city of Wuhan, in central China. Since then, cases of the novel coronavirus - named COVID-19 by the WHO - have been reported in every corner of the globe, including Russia.
On March 11, 2020, the WHO declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic. To date, more than 1,200,000 people have been infected worldwide and over 64,000 deaths have been reported. That said, over 245,000 individuals have recovered from the illness across the globe.
So far, a total of 4,731 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Russia, with 333 patients having recovered from the virus. Moscow handles the bulk of the cases (3,357). The country’s latest data indicates 43 fatalities nationwide. Earlier, the Russian government set up an Internet hotline to keep the public updated on the coronavirus situation.