Bi-weekly COVID-19 Situation Report for 6 countries of the Eastern Partnership. 26 August 2021.

Within EU-funded COVID-19 Solidarity Programme for the Eastern Partnership countries AFEW International prepares regular updates on the COVID-19 developments in the region – Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, and Ukraine. What is the situation today? Please, check it here! 

You can find previous updates in the COVID Corner on our website.

As for 26.08.2021

The number of coronavirus cases per population ratio since the start of the active phase of the pandemic (April 1 2020) in the 6 countries of the EaP

Source: Sciences Po Media lab Coronavirus Country Comparator

Situation report in Armenia

Daily cases

 

Vaccinations

Images: Worldometer, Our World in Data

Cases of COVID-19

— Armenia reports the highest number of new infections since April. COVID-19 infections are increasing, with 483 new infections reported on average each day. That’s 23% of the peak — the highest daily average reported on November 1.

Measures to contain the epidemic

No curfew or travel restrictions are imposed.

—  Since July 1 masks are optional indoors and outdoors.

Vaccination

— Armenia’s vaccine distribution is the slowest in the region.

— Of 30 samples analyzed, Delta accounted for 25, the Health Ministry said on August 2.

 

Situation report Azerbaijan

Daily cases


Vaccinations

Images: Worldometer, Our World in Data

Cases of COVID-19

The average number of new infections reported each day in Azerbaijan rises by more than 2,800 over the last 3 weeks, 68% of its previous peak.

— COVID-19 infections are increasing in Azerbaijan, with 3,551 new infections reported on average each day. That’s 85% of the peak — the highest daily average reported on December 14.

Measures to contain the epidemic

— Azerbaijan extended its quarantine restrictions to limit the spread of COVID-19 until September 1.

— The restrictions mean the borders of the South Caucasus country of about 10 million people will remain closed. Only vaccinated people will be able to attend weddings and visit sports venues. People are required to wear face masks indoors.

— Azerbaijan’s coronavirus task force also said that public transport would not operate in the capital, Baku, on weekends and public holidays.

— Since August 13, people entering the Baku metro must have their temperature checked.

— From September 1, in Azerbaijan persons without COVID passports will not be able to use the services of indoor establishments. Police officers will supervise this and violators will face either a 400 manat fine [approximately $235] or arrest.

 

Situation report Belarus

Daily cases


Vaccinations

Images: Worldometer, Our World in Data

Cases of COVID-19

— The average number of new infections reported each day in Belarus rises by more than 370 over the last 3 weeks, 19% of its previous peak.

— COVID-19 infections are increasing in Belarus, with 1,313 new infections reported on average each day. That’s 68% of the peak — the highest daily average reported on December 15.

Measures to contain the epidemic

— Domestic businesses and services are operating subject to light-touch hygiene measures, including social distancing. Facemasks are required on all public transport, including flights and Metro services.

Situation report Georgia

Daily cases


Vaccinations

Images: Worldometer, Our World in Data

Cases of COVID-19

— For the second time, Georgia has climbed to the top of global charts for COVID-19 transmission rates relative to population size. Deaths are piling up amid vaccine hesitancy, slow vaccination rollout, and the widespread neglect of mask mandates and other lockdown rules.

According to the Deputy Health Minister Tamar Gabunia, the infection rate continues to be very high and there are no signs of stabilization in any region of the country.

—  The seven-day rolling average of new cases soared to over 4,520 this week. Proportionally to the population size, this clocks the highest coronavirus incidence globally – 109 cases per 100,000 residents. In the comparably sized U.S. state of Connecticut, the rate is 15, while the U.S. total is 37.

— The fast-spreading Delta variant is believed to be tearing through Georgia. “The Delta variant is replacing Alfa, accounting for 40 to 50 percent of cases,” said the head of the National Center for Disease Control, Amiran Gamkrelidze, late last month.

— Two field hospitals have been opened in Tbilisi, each with up to 200 beds and they are already receiving patients since there are no more beds available in other hospitals.

Measures to contain the epidemic

— On August 10, the government announced some new measures, including mandatory facemasks in open spaces where five or more people have gathered.

— New penalties of ₾10,000 ($3,200) have also been introduced for catering facilities and other venues which host social gatherings such as weddings and funerals. Repeat offences will result in the facilities being closed.

— On August 23, the Association of Clinics of Georgia called on the government to ensure effective compliance with the restrictions imposed amid a sharp increase in the number of coronavirus infections and an unprecedentedly high mortality rate. The Association of Clinics proposes to urgently take the following measures: read here.

Education

— Schooling can only begin if no more than 4% of tests come back positive. Over the last few weeks, this figure has stayed at an average of 10-12%.

 

Situation report Republic of Moldova

Daily cases


Vaccinations

Images: Worldometer, Our World in Data

Cases of COVID-19

— Moldova reports the highest number of new infections since April.

— COVID-19 infections are increasing in Moldova, with 391 new infections reported on average each day. That’s 24% of the peak — the highest daily average reported on March 28.

Measures to contain the epidemic

— During the August 18 press conference, Prime Minister Natalia Gavrilița assured that the imposition of a new lockdown would not be considered for now. She urged citizens to get vaccinated so as to avoid a wave of infections similar to the one seen at the beginning of the year.

Education

— With the start of the school year on September 1, teachers, non-teaching staff, students and visitors, whether vaccinated or not, will be required to wear masks in all enclosed spaces within an educational institution.

It is also recommended to reduce the number of hours spent by students inside, and postpone or cancel activities that bring together children from different classes, such as sport or cultural events, as well as extracurricular activities during periods of increased risk of infection, in order to avoid crowding and limit the spread of respiratory infections.

 

Situation report Ukraine

Daily cases


Vaccinations

Images: Worldometer, Our World in Data

Cases of COVID-19

— The Delta coronavirus strain is spreading more and more actively in Ukraine, the number of new cases is growing and a new wave of incidence is expected in the autumn, Minister of Health Viktor Liashko said on August 19.

— More than 80% of all deaths from COVID-19 in Ukraine are people over 60.  

Measures to contain the epidemic

— Ukraine has extended an adaptive lockdown and a state of emergency that allows regional authorities to impose COVID-19 restrictions for a further month until October 1 to tackle a surge in infections from the rapidly spreading Delta variant, the prime minister said on Wednesday.

— The “adaptive lockdown” means regional authorities have the power to tighten or ease restrictions depending on the situation locally. The state of emergency had been due to expire at the end of August.

— Ukraine’s seven-day average daily number of new cases has risen above 1,000 since mid-July after authorities lifted most restrictions and maintained only mandatory mask-wearing and social distancing requirements.

— The introduction of a lockdown depends on public awareness of vaccination issues, but there are no grounds for expecting catastrophic consequences from new strains of coronavirus (COVID-19), Finance Minister of Ukraine Serhiy Marchenko has said. “Risks remain. These are low rates of vaccination. Now they are quite serious, but the society should understand that lockdowns depend on public awareness of vaccination issues,” Marchenko told Interfax-Ukraine.

Interesting reads

— The Armenian Weekly: Armenians and the COVID-19 vaccine read.

— JAM News: Heavy fine or arrest: Azerbaijan tightens vaccination requirements read.

— JAM News: Most common arguments against Covid-19 vaccination in Georgia read.

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