Hospital hall. Photo: Elena Sineok, Yuga.ru

14 May 2020, 14:16

Dagestan journalists point to authorities' blunders in COVID-19 situation

Dagestan officials were not properly prepared for the spread of coronavirus and failed to convince people of its danger in time, the heads of local editions have commented on local authorities' statistics on COVID-19 and viral pneumonia incidence, voiced out by the authorities.

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that on May 12, the head of Dagestan, Vladimir Vasiliev, said that 481 people had died from viral pneumonia since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic; and in April 2020, the incidence of pneumonia increased by 33.6% against the last year's same month.

In the opinion of Milrad Fatullaev, the editor-in-chief of the "Derbent" News Agency, the republic's authorities have underestimated, in preparing for the epidemic, the possible extent of the infection spread in Dagestan. "The medical facilities were overloaded very quickly; they had to open new hospitals. But all the same, there aren't enough hospital beds in Makhachkala. There were cases when the ambulance couldn't take a patient out of home, because it was nowhere to hospitalize him/her," he said.

The officials' allegations that people themselves are to blame for the wide spread of the infection, since they didn't want to observe the self-isolation regime, is an attempt to shift the responsibility for their disastrous work onto the population, Mr Fatullaev has suggested.

A similar opinion was expressed by Magomed Magomedov, the deputy editor-in-chief of the "Chernovik" (Draft) weekly. The republic's authorities failed to take all the necessary measures to prevent the danger in time, he has noted.

"A failure to properly and timely inform the population has led to the fact that people did not perceive the existing threat correctly. They felt some kind of 'sobering', only when the wave of deaths rose in various dwelling settlements," Mr Magomedov has concluded.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on May 14, 2020 at 11:04 am MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

Author: Rasul Magomedov, Magomed Tuayev; Source: CK correspondents

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