'Unprecedented load': new beds planned to be deployed in Kazan

In the capital of the republic, almost half of the population has been vaccinated, but only about 100 free beds remain in Covid-19 hospitals

Due to the tense epidemiological situation in Kazan and the surrounding areas, new hospital beds are being urgently deployed, additional vaccination points are being organised and a telegram bot is being launched. The city authorities also made a grand gesture — they handed over 35 official cars to polyclinics for doctors to leave on calls and extended the preferential parking regime until the end of the year. Due to the difficult situation during the autumn holidays, the work of school camps has been cancelled, the work of circles in the House of Culture, where vaccination points against coronavirus are deployed, has been suspended.

Number of patients is not decreasing

Vladimir Zhavoronkov, the deputy minister of healthcare of the Republic of Tatarstan, head of the healthcare department, called the epidemic situation in the city an unprecedented burden on the healthcare system of Kazan, which our doctors have not experienced in recent history. The number of ambulance calls to patients with suspected COVID-19 and the level of treatment in provisional hospitals, compared with last week, have not decreased. The ambulance, as Zhavoronkov put it, is working “at maximum capacity”.

2,151 beds have been deployed in temporary infectious diseases hospitals. The share of available beds is about 7%. Due to the constant increase in cases, approximately 60 more beds will be organised in Kazan on October 27. Besides, a temporary covidarium for 30 beds was opened last week on the basis of the Pestrechinskaya Central Clinical Hospital.

Since 25 October, another one has been added to the 48 available vaccination points, 12 of which are located outside medical institutions, located on the territory of the Barionix water park on Gafuri Street. According to Zhavoronkov, by Monday morning, almost 474,500 people had been vaccinated, which is 48,6% of the adult population of Kazan, or 60,7% of the vaccination plan to achieve collective immunity. The increase in vaccinated people for a week was 50,470 people. Despite such accelerated rates, the head of the City Healthcare Department noted the low level of vaccinations among the most vulnerable group of the population — citizens aged 60+. Among the older generation, only 101,4 thousand people, or 39%, are vaccinated.

“Every day we record a large number of appeals from citizens with questions about the availability of a particular vaccine at specific vaccination points. Residents could not always get the required information in a short time by methodically calling vaccination points themselves. Taking into account this situation, the Mayor's Office of Kazan and the City's Healthcare Department have developed a telegram bot that provide information about the availability of a vaccine in the context of the type of vaccine at a specific vaccination point at 8 o'clock in the morning of the current day," Zhavoronkov announced the new introduction.

The information resource is planned to be launched in the next few days. Agitating for the need to get vaccinated, Zhavoronkov made a lyrical digression, saying that while visiting the “red” zones, he and his colleagues try to communicate with the people being there. 99% of them say they would have been vaccinated if they knew this would happen to them.

Volunteers with PC knowledge are required

Ilsur Metshin, the mayor of Kazan, noted that few people object to vaccination against COVID-19 now and expressed hope that if the current pace is maintained, collective immunity can be expected by December. The mayor ordered for the time of the forced “holidays” to transfer the official cars of officials to the doctors of polyclinics, which doctors will use for house calls. As it became known later, 35 cars were allocated to the primary healthcare network.

The mayor also did not forget about helping businesses. He noted that while the federal government is working on its package of measures to support entrepreneurs, the mayor's office is extending the preferential mode of parking until the end of the year. By the way, it was supposed to end on October 30. Parking during the grace period is charged on weekdays from 7 am to 6 pm. At other times, as well as on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays, parking remains free.

The city authorities have also announced a new recruitment of volunteers. This time they are needed at vaccination points — to fill out the register of those who have been vaccinated against COVID-19. The volunteers will work in two shifts: from 9 am to 1 pm and from 1 pm to 5 pm, for two weeks.

According to Guzel Sagitova, the deputy head of the Executive Committee of Kazan, candidates of vaccinated adults with PC knowledge are being considered, older people will not be able to participate in this. A total of 120 volunteers are required. To date, 15 people have already joined the work.

School camps will not work

Sagitova told how the weekends and school holidays announced by President Putin will be held in the conditions of “Сovid-19" restrictions. The deputy head of the executive committee noted that the final mode of operation will be announced after the decision of the leadership of Tatarstan. In the meantime, it is known that all mass events have been cancelled in Kazan from October 30 to November 7.

During the autumn holidays, thematic clubs will work in institutions subordinate to the city department for children and youth affairs. Employees over the age of 60 will be transferred to self-isolation mode, the rest of the specialists will continue to work, subject to the availability of a QR code. In the Lenin House of Culture, Saidash, Moskovsky Shopping Centre, where temporary vaccination points are deployed, classes in clubs will be suspended. The city's sports facilities will work as usual. The pupils of sports schools will have the opportunity to attend training sessions, but outsiders will not be allowed on the territory.

The autumn holidays for schoolchildren will be held from 1 to 7 November. The authorities decided not to open school camps for this time. All planned excursions and events are organised outdoors or in spacious rooms with mandatory observance of anti-covid measures. Institutions of additional education and kindergartens will continue to work in full-time mode.

Eleonora Rylova

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