Immunologist Vladimir Bolibok also told NSN, by what criterion it should be determined whether a particular region is ready to abolish the mask regime. Russia needs to keep its borders locked in order for the country to cope with the coronavirus this year, said allergist-immunologist Vladimir Bolibok in an interview with NSN. Earlier, the WHO European Office suggested that the COVID-19 pandemic would end in early 2022. “If Russia remains closed from the entry of foreigners, and we thereby exclude drifts, then we will be able to overcome the pandemic before 2022. But if everything opens up, there will be local outbreaks, and they will be associated with new strains. Moreover, in Russia, its own strain may appear, this will slightly reduce the effectiveness of vaccines. If now it exceeds 90%, then on new strains it will be about 60%. And vaccination coverage is also important,”Bolibok said. Doctor: coronavirus and blood type are interconnected The expert admitted that people are now disoriented in this matter, therefore they are not so willing to get vaccinated. Vladimir Bolibok recalled that the virus will not disappear completely, it will simply become seasonal. At the same time, the issue of lifting restrictions has not yet been resolved. “The issue of lifting the mask regime is serious. It is decided at the level of heads of regions. In Moscow, perhaps, this will happen faster, because the mayor Sergei Sobyanin is quite decisive. But Udmurtia and Chechnya recalled the decisions to abolish the mask regime when they were threatened from the top. Confusion in the end, who actually decides this. I remember that Putin said that the regions decide this, because it is impossible to manage this process from the center, and as a result, an administrative conflict happened,”the doctor said. There are enough regions in Russia where statistics record a decline in the incidence. In this case, the most important indicator is the vacated bed fund. And where hospitals are again starting to work according to the profile, the mask regime can already be canceled, Bolibok said. “A pandemic is like a natural phenomenon, and making forecasts is like making a weather forecast. Tomorrow a new infection will pop up and we will start to fight it,”he added. According to the operational headquarters. the daily increase in new cases of coronavirus infection in Russia amounted to 11,749 cases. The infection rate continues to decline since the beginning of the year, for the second day in a row the number of new cases is at more than 11.5 thousand cases.