Russia has been battling record numbers of daily deaths from COVID-19 in the past week, with 25,781 new coronavirus cases and 883 deaths reported today, according to The Moscow Times.
- The country has officially recorded more than 7.5 million coronavirus infections and 210,000+ deaths, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reports—a number thought to be underreported—marking Europe’s highest death toll, the AP notes.
Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin to warn the country’s vaccination rate in Russia is too low to halt the surge.
- Only ~50 million 32.5% of the country’s people have gotten at least one vaccine shot, with just 28% fully vaccinated, despite Russia’s early release of its coronavirus vaccine, Sputnik V.
Antibody tests: Some blame a botched vaccine rollout and mixed messages—but the popularity of coronavirus antibody tests may have inhibited vaccine uptake, too.
Many Russians embraced the antibody tests, believing they confirm immunity from the virus, a separate AP article explains—but Western health experts say the tests are unreliable for diagnosis or gauging immunity to COVID-19.
Meanwhile, Russia has completed Sputnik V’s Phase 3 trials of its Sputnik V vaccine, Reuters reports.