All news

Russian infectious disease expert faces criminal charges for breaking quarantine

The healthcare specialist traveled to Spain for vacation in early March without informing her superiors

PYATIGORSK, March 23. /TASS/. Russia’s Investigative Committee has opened a criminal investigation into a chief freelance infectious disease expert at the Stavropol Region’s Healthcare Ministry for breaking partial coronavirus quarantine, the committee said in a statement on Monday.

"The Investigative Committee’s First Department for the Investigation of High-Profile Cases has opened a criminal investigation under Articles 237 and 239 of the Russian Criminal Code (concealing information about threats to the life and health of other people, and negligence)," the statement reads.

According to investigators, a professor at Stavropol State Medical University’s Department for Infectious Diseases, who is also the regional Healthcare Ministry’s chief freelance infectious disease expert, traveled to Spain for vacation in early March without informing her superiors. "Upon return to Russia, she failed to inform them of her trip to a coronavirus-hit country and avoided the 14-day self-isolation required to prevent the infection from spreading," the statement adds. The woman continued to live a normal life, delivering lectures to university students, participating in conferences and visiting various agencies. However, several days after her return from Spain, she felt unwell and was taken to hospital, where she tested positive for the coronavirus.

"The investigation is underway to establish the circumstances of the case and identify those who are to be held accountable," the Investigative Committee pointed out.