Thu 23 April 2020:
Russia confirmed 4,772 additional cases of the novel coronavirus on Thursday, slightly down compared to the figures of the last few days.
Overall 62,773 people have contracted the virus, which has spread to all 85 regions in the country, an emergency team spearheading the fight against the outbreak said in a statement.
The pandemic has claimed the lives of 42 people over the last 24 hours, with the death toll also exhibiting a marked decline.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, 555 people have died due to the COVID-19 in Russia.
Recoveries numbered 471 since Wednesday, while more than 45,000 are still in hospitals, including 2,000 children.
Among those under medical care, 2,300 are in critical condition, with 1,300 receiving breathing assistance via ventilators.
Moscow remains the center of the epidemic in Russia and has reported a majority of all new confirmed cases.
Authorities expect the peak of the outbreak to be in the coming two or three weeks.
Meanwhile, scientists announced that preclinical trials of a vaccine against COVID-19 will have been completed by May 31.
As vaccine development efforts continue, doctors are reportedly using Mefloquine, a drug normally used against malaria, to treat stable forms of the coronavirus. They are also using convalescent plasma therapy, transfusing the blood and anti-bodies of recovered patients to those in critical condition.
Asked about the origin of the coronavirus, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said there was no evidence that the virus was artificially created in China.
The novel virus has spread to 185 countries and regions since emerging in China last December.
More than 2.63 million cases have been reported worldwide, with the death toll over 183,000, according to data compiled by the U.S.-based Johns Hopkins University.
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