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More details on Russian COVID-19 response group in Italy

Nine Il-76 military transport aircraft from Chkalovsky Airport will be involved in the operation.

They will move nearly 100 virologists and epidemiologists, and eight medical teams with dozens pieces of equipment to provide assistance in combating the coronavirus (COVID-19) to an airbase of the Italian Air Force near Rome.

The deliveries will be carried out through the Ministry of Defense with the involvement of aircraft of the Russian Aerospace Forces.

The deployed systems and supplies will include protective equipment, KAMAZ-based mobile systems for aerosol disinfection of transport and territory, medical and other equipment.

HINT: A separate sanitary and epidemiological unit of the Russian Army medical brigade is designed to conduct qualified medical reconnaissance and a complex of sanitary-hygienic and anti-epidemic measures. The unit includes three mobile sanitary and epidemiological laboratories (one type “A” and two types “B”), a washing and disinfection platoon, and squads equipped separate tasks like disinfection-deratization and quarantine isolation. The capacity of the unit in the summer is 95 people an hour, in the winter – 48 people an hour.

The Russian COVID-19 response team includes viral agent defense experts that fought against anthrax and African plague.

“Most of them are leading experts in their field, they were directly involved in the elimination of outbreaks of African swine fever, anthrax, the development of a vaccine against Ebola and plague vaccines,” the Russian Defense Ministry said.

The group is led by Major General Sergey Kikot. He is a leading developer and specialist in the application of the latest examples of special processing systems. He has carried tasks of organizing work in difficult epidemiological conditions of outbreaks of anthrax peptic ulcer and liquidation of flood consequences.

Colonel Aleksey Smirnov is a leading epidemiologist and a candidate of medical sciences. He has been actively involved in the development of a vaccine against Ebola.

Lieutenant Colonel Gennady Eremin is a leading scientist at the research center, and a candidate of medical sciences. Eremin is an expert in the field of organization and employment of anti-epidemiological measures. He has experience in dealing with such dangerous diseases as African swine fever and foot-and-mouth disease.

Lieutenant Colonel Vyacheslav Kulish is a specialist in the development of protection against biological damaging agents of a viral nature. He participated in the development of antiplague drugs and vaccines against Ebola.

Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Yumanov is an associate professor of the Military Medical Academy. S.M. Kirova and a candidate of medical sciences. He has participated in the deployment of a mobile hospital in the Republic of Guinea as part of an international program to combat Ebola.

Earlier, Russia delivered coronavirus testing kits to 13 countries. Public health watchdog Rospotrebnadzor said on March 21 that the Russian-manufactured equipment will be capable of conducting over 100,000 tests for Covid-19, and has already been used to track down the first cases of the disease in Armenia, Belarus, Kyrgyzstan, and Uzbekistan. Moscow is due to ship kits to Serbia, Iran, and North Korea as well as to Egypt and Venezuela, among others.