Coronavirus Chronicle in Moldova: New Anti-Records

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Marina DRAGALIN Yesterday Moldova registered another anti-record of COVID-19 contaminations: 632 new cases were detected in the country per day. The epidemiological situation got negatively affected by the fact that the population does not comply with quarantine measures, people import coronavirus cases and in addition the new school year started. Globally, the number of the new type of coronavirus cases continues to grow. Over the last weeks, many countries have seen record increases in the number of cases. The total number of worldwide infected people is approaching 26.5 million people. Out of these, more than 873 thousand cases ended fatally. The epidemiological situation around the world causes justified concern. As practice has shown, in the context of globalization, going into strict quarantine measures is not the optimal solution and is fraught with serious economic and social consequences. Unsurprisingly, the extraordinary meeting of the G20 Foreign Ministers discussed expanding international cooperation to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic and increasing preparedness for future pandemics. “During the meeting, the foreign ministers admitted it was important opening borders, bringing families together and stimulating measures to allow the economy grow in the light of protective measures taken by health organizations and national regulation during the COVID-19 pandemic,” the event's communiqué informed. In Moldova, the epidemic of coronavirus infection reaches its new peak; our country continues beating anti-records. To date, almost 38.4 thousand cases of coronavirus infection have already been confirmed, out of which more than 10 thousand are active. More than 30 thousand residents of the republic are under suspicion of being infected. It is worth noting that August had the lowest death rate from coronavirus since the beginning of the epidemic: about 25 people out of each 1,000 people who recovered (15% lower than in July). In total, 1036 people died from COVID-19 in Moldova. On the other hand, the last two weeks have seen extremely high daily rates for new cases. At the same time, intermediate indicators continue remaining very high. Even the minimum number of cases detected per day over the past two weeks (that is 220 cases) is quite impressive. Two months ago, similar values were the peak ones. The incidence of coronavirus per 100 thousand inhabitants has also increased. At the same time, there is a lot of patients in serious condition connected to artificial lung ventilation devices. Only in the capital, 83% of COVID beds is already filled. The authorities plan expanding bed capacity to cope with the number of incoming COVID-19 infected patients. At the first stage, another 120 beds will be created in the Republican Clinical Hospital named after Timofei Mosneaga for patients with COVID-19 in serious condition, 25 beds in the Institute of Mother and Child and 10 in the Basarabeasca regional hospital. The situation gets aggravated by infection wide spreading among medical personnel. According to the latest data, almost 4.5 thousand health workers in Moldova have been coronavirus infected. According to the authorities, almost half of the cases belongs to nurses, more than a quarter to doctors, the remaining 30% to hospital attendants and ancillary personnel. Since the beginning of the epidemic, according to official figures, 32 medical workers have died. Even the Minister of Health, Labor and Social Protection Viorica Dumbraveanu got positively tested for coronavirus. However, there is no information as to her contamination and treatment circumstances. Awaiting for a coronavirus vaccine, 7 Moldovan patients decided to go through clinical testing of a COVID-19 drug from the United States. The obtained data and biological samples are sent to American laboratories for analysis. The study involved patients in moderate to severe condition. Volunteers have the right to cease continuing the trials at any time. Another challenge was the educational process resumption. The new rules and conditions for the lessons to take place have displeased both parents and teachers. According to some parents a lesson lasts 15-30 minutes and that is clearly not enough for teachers. In combination with the recommendations of the Ministry of Education to cancel homework, this can lead to a serious decrease in the level of material assimilation. Parents also fear that schools will be closed from September 15, however, representatives of the Ministry of Education deny such rumors. “We didn’t open schools to close them again,” the Ministry specified. It is worth noting that to date, 11 educational institutions are already in quarantine, and 8 have not opened due to non-compliance with the requirements of the National Agency for Public Health. Moreover, 125 teachers have already been infected with the coronavirus, another 250 remain isolated. However, that’s only the beginning: in the next few weeks, experts predict a significant increase in the number of infections in the educational system. The epidemiological crisis continues, and the coming autumn will obviously justify all the negative forecasts about new outbreaks and waves of the disease that experts have made back in the spring and summer. Officials prepare the population for namely such a situation, predicting the daily infection rate of COVID-19 at the level of a thousand or more people. However, even if indicators rise worse than the spring peaks, this will no longer lead to resuming the large-scale quarantine restrictions. The population is tired of the epidemic and wants a normal life so the authorities, especially before the elections, have to reckon with. We are to sum up the results of this approach by the end of autumn, since namely then are to show up consequences of the offline educational process together with the pre-election race bearing active home-to-home campaigning and the two-rounded voting at the polling stations.