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Source: President of Russia – The Kremlin – English

Also taking part in the meeting are executives from the Government and Presidential Executive Office, Presidential Plenipotentiary Envoys to the federal districts as well as heads of ministries and departments.
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President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, colleagues,
Is everybody present? Can you all hear and see me?
Good afternoon.
The executives of the Russian Government and heads of all Russian regions are taking part in our work.
I suggest focusing on the issues that are the main ones for all of us today. These include: fighting the spread of the coronavirus, protecting people’s health and life, people’s safety, ensuring economic stability, safeguarding employment levels and our people’s incomes.
I will start with an overriding priority common to all regions. I mean improving the readiness of the medical institutions and considerably increasing their resources and capabilities. It is an unquestionable priority now.
The necessary federal support has already been provided to this end and reached the regions. This includes over 33 billion rubles for the deployment of additional specialised, fully-equipped beds in hospitals and contagious isolation wards.
About 13 billion rubles more have been allocated for the purchase of medical equipment, including ventilators as well as mobile intensive care units and ambulances, which will reach the regions already in April.
Hopefully, we will not need all the reserves and additional capacities that are being created in the healthcare system. But now we must be ready to fight for the life of every person in every region.
I believe you understand how much personal responsibility you have for ensuring that the allocated funds are used as effectively as possible.
I ask you to act in a prompt, organised and professional manner and to value time, every day and every ruble. To solve all organisational and personnel issues in advance. To form teams of specialists capable of working with new equipment in hospitals that are being converted to treat people with the coronavirus infection.
At the same time, I am instructing the Finance Ministry to give the regions the flexibility to concentrate the allocated funds on those problems that are more visible on the ground. I know that the regional heads – and I communicate with you, colleagues, on a daily basis – have proposals on these matters. And I ask you to give separate reports on them today, to address them separately.
But let me emphasise that when providing such freedom of movement, we will hold you strictly accountable. We will evaluate the result not by the formal number of reserved beds, but by the actual readiness of medical institutions, equipment and personnel to provide the specialised care that patients with severe symptoms need.
We also provided for additional payments to doctors, nurses and medical personnel for the special working conditions and increased workload. Funds for these purposes – more than 10 billion rubles – have been allocated from the federal budget and will soon reach the regions. People should receive such payments on time, without delay.
To be continued.


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