2 Aug 2022 17:00

Rospotrebnadzor recommends that at-risk groups wear masks in public areas to avoid Covid-19 infections

MOSCOW. Aug 2 (Interfax) - The Federal Service for Surveillance on Consumer Rights Protection and Human Wellbeing (Rospotrebnadzor) has recommended that at-risk groups wear masks in public areas and on public transport amid the increasing Covid-19 morbidity in Russia caused by new, more contagious sub-lineages of the Omicron variant.

"Although the disease provoked by new sub-lineages of the Omicron variant often manifests itself as an acute respiratory infection, the novel coronavirus poses a considerable threat to at-risk categories of citizens. Seeking to reduce the risk of infection, Rospotrebnadzor recommends that masks be worn in public areas and on public transport and that hand sanitizers be used," the service told reporters following a meeting chaired by its head, Anna Popova.

The population should pay attention to the recommendations as morbidity is growing due to the new sub-lineages of the Omicron variant, Rospotrebnadzor said.

Russia recorded 73,717 cases of Covid-19 over the past week. The Covid-19 incidence rate went up 67.6% over that period, and 15 regions reported morbidity levels higher than the country's average.

According to Roskomnadzor, only 0.83% of the infections recorded over the past two weeks were identified as BA.1 (the initial sub-lineage of the Omicron variant), while 16.4% were identified as BA.2 (stealth Omicron), and 82.58% as BA.4/BA.5. There were isolated cases of the Delta variant and the BA.2.75 (Centaur) sub-lineage of the Omicron variant.

Heads of Roskomnadzor's regional branches have been tasked with informing the population about ways of preventing Covid-19 infections in the summer and responding to the variability of strains and emergence of new Covid-19 sub-lineages. Rospotrebnadzor says it continues to closely monitor the Covid-19 situation in Russia.