Did Putin contract the virus?

With several politicians, ministers and a head of state in recent weeks falling victim to the virus, Russian President Vladimir Putin’s close encounter with a potential Covid-19 infected person last week has raised speculations about his health.According to a media report, a doctor who had accompanied Putin during a round of a hospital in Moscow to check its preparedness for the pandemic has been diagnosed with the coronavirus infection.Putin had visited the Kommunarka hospital and chatted with the doctor on March 28, but neither of them had worn any protective cover during their meeting, the report said, citing TV footage from the visit.

Later on Facebook, Dr Denis Protsenko said: “Yes, I have tested positive for coronavirus, but I feel pretty good. I’ve isolated myself in my office. I think the immunity I’ve developed this month is doing its job.”Kremlin, however, reassured there was nothing to worry about Putin’s health, saying that he has been regularly tested for coronavirus and that “everything is okay,” according the RIA Novosti news agency. Putin’s health is being monitored for all the illnesses “around the clock,” it said.

Putin, though, was wearing a hazmat suit and a respirator, during his tour of the hospital wards to meet the patients.Russia has clamped a lockdown after declaring the Covid-19 pandemic a national emergency. The lawmakers also approved steep penalties, including jail terms of up to seven years for violating the order.In the recent past, several high-profile politicians, including UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Health Minister Nadine Dorries as well as several lawmakers in the US, Canada, and Europe have reported self-quarantine after contracting the virus.

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