There are a few changes in the situation in Russia starting from today, May 12. First of all: Russia now has the second biggest coronavirus cases number after the US according to Johns Hopkins University CSSE. All in all, there are 232 243 confirmed cases in Russia. 2116 deaths. 43 500 people have recovered. On average we have 10000-11000 new cases daily.
Moscow has still been leading: 121301 coronavirus cases total in the city. There’s been 5392 new cases within the last 24 hours only. Moscow region has 22700 cases total.
St. Petersburg ranks the third in this list. So far, we have 8050 cases as of May 12, withing the last 24 hour there were 339 confirmed cases. Deaths in St. Petersburg: 58.
At the same time, May 12 is the first day of face mask requirement. Starting from today, May 12 St. Petersburg government has made face masks and gloves mandatory. The same face mask requirement has been introduced in majority of other Russian regions.
Over 200 vending machines selling masks have been installed at the subway stations. If they are not enough, more will be added. In St Petersburg masks are not provided on free of charge basis, however this is not the case everywhere. My parents say in Tver in many supermarkets free of charge disposable masks are offered at the entrance. In Murmansk face masks are also provided to the citizens for free.
In order to survive in the pandemic times many businesses converted to individual protective gear productions. In St Petersburg a factory that in peaceful times produced sweets switched to mass face mask production. The director of ShokoLogo factory saw the necessity to change as early as March. Additional equipment was purchased, and it took no time at all to re-adjust to the new production lines. Now the makes chocolate only one day a week, the rest of the time it produces neoprene face masks.
Practically all the restrictions are prolonged till the end of May. The local government decided to allow reopening of tailoring repairs, shoemakers’, opticians’ as well as cleaning services. Legal services and real estate agencies are allowed to work, by appointment only. We hoped to be able to have our hair cut: according to the preliminary plan beauty salons were to start working too. Necessary social distancing was to be followed hence the restrictions allowed only one customer to be serviced at a time. I headed to the local hairdresser’s today – bad luck! It was still closed.
Financial Support to the Hermitage and Other Museums During Coronavirus Epidemic
The Ministry of Culture will get 3,8 bln roubles from the Reserve Fund of the Russian Federation. The money will be invested in the museums, theatres and other cultural institutions that closed down partially or completely due to coronavirus. Among the establishments that are to receive the support from the government are the State Hermitage and Bolshoy Theatre. In St Petersburg almost all the museums and theatres – both Federal and private – closed down practically from the first days epidemic came to Russia. I believe all of them count on this support from the state.