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Putin gets tested for COVID-19 as often as necessary, Kremlin says

The spokesman noted that he is not aware of the procedure of Putin’s testing

MOSCOW, April 7. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin gets tested for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) as often as necessary, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Tuesday.

"[He gets tested] as often as his doctor sees fit," the spokesman said, answering a corresponding question. Peskov noted that he is not aware of the procedure of Putin’s testing. "I do not deal with the matters of the president’s medical care," he added.

Peskov noted that Putin’s decision to hold a meeting with Presidential Envoy to the Far Eastern Federal District Yuri Trutnev and Minister for the Development of the Far East and Arctic Alexander Kozlov at the Kremlin is not a violation of the self-isolation regime.

"Yes, he [Putin] did come to the Kremlin yesterday," Peskov said, noting that the president "does not visit public places and does not meet a large amount of people." "All precautionary measures are being taken," Peskov assured, adding that if the president meets with people face to face, every participant of the meeting gets tested for COVID-19 beforehand.

The reporters pointed out that Putin still chooses to shake hands with the officials he meets. "The president shakes hands with people who have been carefully checked. So in this case, the president has the right to choose the manner of greeting that he is used to and that he finds appropriate," the spokesman explained.

In late December 2019, Chinese officials notified the World Health Organization (WHO) about the outbreak of a previously unknown pneumonia in the city of Wuhan, in central China. Since then, cases of the novel coronavirus - named COVID-19 by the WHO - have been reported in every corner of the globe, including Russia.

On March 11, 2020, the WHO declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic. According to the latest statistics, roughly 1,350,000 people have been infected worldwide and more than 74,000 deaths have been reported. That said, over 286,000 individuals have recovered from the illness across the globe.

To date, a total of 7,497 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Russia, with 494 patients having recovered from the virus. Moscow accounts for the majority of cases (5,181). The country’s latest data indicates 58 fatalities nationwide. Earlier, the Russian government set up an Internet hotline to keep the public updated on the coronavirus situation.