MOSCOW, Aug. 14 (Reuters) – Daily deaths from COVID-19 in Russia hit a new high of 819 on Saturday, a day after the Moscow health department reported the highest number of monthly deaths in the city since the start of the pandemic.
Daily coronavirus deaths in Russia are on the rise after infections peaked in July. Authorities blame the infectious Delta variant and a slow vaccination rate.
Moscow said Friday evening that the death rate in the city in July was 70% higher than before the pandemic in 2019 and 60% higher than in the same month last year.
A total of 17,237 deaths in Moscow in July is the highest monthly death toll since the start of the pandemic. Most of the excess deaths have been caused by the coronavirus outbreak, the Moscow health department said.
“The momentum is linked to the sharp rise in infections due to the spread of a new strain of coronavirus in June as well as the unusually hot weather in the city in recent months,” the department said, adding that the high temperatures have made COVID-19 patients feel even worse.
The official total number of coronavirus deaths in Russia stands at 169,683. Rosstat, the government statistics agency, keeps a separate tally from that of the Pandemic Task Force and says it has recorded around 315,000 deaths related to the virus. COVID-19 between last April and June of this year.
Russia reported around 463,000 additional deaths from April 2020 to June this year, according to Reuters calculations based on the latest data from Rosstat. Some epidemiologists say excessive deaths are the best way to measure the actual number of deaths from COVID-19. Read more
Russia reported 22,144 new coronavirus infections on Saturday. Daily cases have so far declined in August after the July peak.
Reporting by Gleb Stolyarov, written by Maria Tsvetkova, editing by Andrew Cawthorne and Christina Fincher
Our Standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.