Collective COVID-19 Immunity May Be Developed in Russia by the End of 2021

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The necessary degree of collective immunity against coronavirus in Russia may be established by the end of this year, according to Alexander Gintsburg, director of the V.I. Gamalei, Vedomosti writes.

“The development of herd immunity is now proceeding successfully,” Gintsburg told TASS. In response to the issue of whether the required level of vaccination would be reached by the end of the year, he said, “We must be on time.” He stated that there is an excess of vaccines in Russia’s regions; the issue is that people are more actively seeking to get vaccinated.

In early July, Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin directed Rospotrebnadzor and the Ministry of Health to revise the Russian vaccination program so that 80-90 percent of the population is immune to coronavirus. Scientists had said that in order to fight the epidemic, 60-70 percent of the country’s population must develop immunity by the autumn of this year.

In response, Areg Totolyan, the head of the St. Pasteur Institute, said that early statistics show that the indication of 60% has already been met. However, he said, this is not the level “that enables you to breathe out and manage the process.” Herd immunity will be established by September, according to Minister of Health Mikhail Murashko, RBC said.

In Russia, mass immunization against coronavirus started in January. Later, a number of areas declared that people from “risk categories” would be required to get vaccinated. In Russia, four coronavirus vaccines have been approved: Sputnik V, EpiVacCorona, KoviVak, and Sputnik Light.