Recently, Vladimir Putin has had to harshly criticize the government of Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin in the wake of bureaucratic obstacles, which impede payments to doctors working with COVID-19 patients.
Although the global COVID-19 pandemic seemed not very grave at the very beginning in Russia, the country could not avoid a serious spike in the disease incidence, despite the fact that quarantine measures were taken by the authorities even before the number of cases began to grow rapidly. Meanwhile, these restrictive measures have caused serious tensions in society. People’s incomes were the main argument against the self-isolation regulations and “non-working days.” Typically, many Russians have off-the-books jobs, and under the new conditions they cannot expect to be paid their full salaries. As a result, millions of residents lost their income which led to serious financial issues in a huge number of families.
Numerous experts are only adding oil to the flame demanding that the federal center stop finally saving on people, follow the way of the major Western countries, and start paying out financial aid to the Russians. Over a month later, the authorities actually surrendered. The ambitious plan to pay out material assistance was announced. Vladimir Putin’s statement about payments to the families with children at the age from 3 to 16 years that would receive 10,000 rubles ($139.30) for each child was a part of it. Additionally, earlier, those who are fighting against the coronavirus infection on the frontline, the doctors working directly with COVID-19 patients, were promised to get increased payments and benefits. In other words, the Russian authorities gradually began to introduce more considerable measures to support the people. However, it didn’t stop the stream of criticism. As it turned out, many Russians have serious difficulties in obtaining the promised payments. Apparently, the fact has exhausted the stock of patience of the usually restrained Russian President.
“All April Payments to be Completed as Early as May 15”
Recently, Vladimir Putin has had to harshly criticize the government of Prime Minister Mikhail Mishstin due to the bureaucratic obstacles delaying the payments to doctors working with COVID-19 patients. At a meeting with federal ministers, Russian President said that if officials had developed transparent and understandable basic methods of calculations refusing red tape and paperwork, the money would have already been transferred to their recipients.
According to Vladimir Putin, back in March, the federal authorities allocated more than 10 bln rubles ($139,300,000) precisely for payments to medical workers. Moreover, in April the state allocated almost 42 bln rubles ($584,220,000) more for all those working with COVID-19 patients directly. “All settlements for April were to be completed by May 15 but, according to my data, by the end of the last working week these funds had not reached everyone they were intended for,” complained Putin. He added that these problems directly pointed at the shortcomings in the cabinet’s work.
Mikhail Murashko, Minister of Health of the Russian Federation, has also caused Putin’s discontent. Murashko said that officials have a number of questions “to the governors and heads of medical care institutions” because of delays in payment. In response, Putin made it clear that in this case the “finger-pointing” is unacceptable. “There are always questions to everyone,” said the Russian President. “However, if there had been a cabinet resolution that set out transparent, clear and understandable principles and ways to transfer money to those who are working under special conditions, there would have been fewer questions to the chief doctors, who, incidentally, also work around the clock. There would have been no questions to the governors either. And then there would have been no need to correct this resolution of the government.”