very cheap and long-known drugs help save the lungs with coronavirus

Cloving hospital on the basis of the Medical Scientific and Educational Center (ISSC) Moscow State University named after M.V.Lomonosov took the first patients on April 21 and completed his work on June 13. It turned out that it was possible to achieve the best treatment results for COVID-19 in Moscow. Over the entire period, 4 patients died, and among severe patients who got mechanical ventilation, the mortality rate was less than 14% (for comparison, the average for the city and the world was up to 70 – 80%). Eighteen doctors out of 220 employees of the hospital were infected with coronavirus, there were no deaths among the medical staff.

What approaches were used at the University Hospital of Moscow State University to achieve such results? We continue the conversation with the head. Department of Therapy, Faculty of Fundamental Medicine, Moscow State University, Head of the Department of Age-Associated Diseases, Medical Scientific and Educational Center, Doctor of Medical Sciences, Cardiologist Yana Orlova.


– Most of those who are ill or are afraid to get sick are worried about fibrotic changes in their lungs. They say that you have developed special therapy that can reduce the risk of developing fibrosis. Is it possible?!

– Yes, we launched an appropriate clinical study. There are no final results yet, but we have developed clinical practice.

“What did you do to save the lungs?”

– We used a combination of bromhexine and spironolactone (both are long-known very cheap drugs. – Ed.). Bromhexine is an expectorant that has been prescribed to patients with pneumonia and cough for many years. At the same time, experimental data showed that this drug can block a specific enzyme and impede the penetration of coronavirus into cells. True, it was on this effect that we counted to a lesser extent in inpatients, since such an effect is important mainly in the early stages of the disease. But the expectorant effect of bromhexine really helps patients with COVID. I heard that our colleagues in Peter launched a study of bromhexine for prophylactic purposes. We will wait for the results.

Coronavirus infected 18 doctors from 220 employees of the hospital, there were no deaths among the medical staffPhoto: Ivan MAKEEV


– The second drug – spironolactone – is traditionally widely used in cardiology for the treatment of heart failure, severe hypertension. It has a small diuretic, magnesium and potassium-preserving effect, continues Yana. Orlova. – It has several mechanisms through which it can be useful in coronavirus infection.

Firstly, a mechanism that prevents the development of fibrosis in general in the body. There are works that, in particular, show that spironolactone reduces fibrosis in the heart. At the same time, it is known that the tendency to fibrosis is not local, but systemic – where there is more inflammation, there will certainly be fibrosis. And we see, of course, fibrotic changes in the “covide” in our patients. Therefore, we prescribed spironolactone as a drug for the prevention of this process.

Secondly, this drug blocks sex hormone receptors, in particular testosterone. Some published studies suggest that “high-testosterone” men suffer from “covid” more often and develop more severe fibrotic changes. Therefore, blocking these receptors for several weeks during COVID treatment may be useful in reducing the severity of complications. We are not talking about a longer intake, since male patients are unlikely to agree with a decrease in testosterone levels in the long term.

And perhaps the most important point. In almost all of our patients, we observed hypokalemia (a decrease in potassium levels. – Ed.). With coronavirus infection, potassium is intensely excreted from the body, and scientific articles even suggest that hypokalemia serves as the trigger for a cytokine storm. So spironolactone has a real chance to reduce the risk of this dangerous complication. But the main thing, in my opinion, is that lowering the level of potassium in the body is extremely harmful to the heart and triggers life-threatening rhythm disturbances, increasing the risk of sudden death. We, like all others, replenished potassium with droppers, but it was more effective to retain it in the body with the help of spironolactone.

Men certainly get worse than women;  the elderly are heavier than the young;  overweight people are heavier than patients without excess weight Photo: Ivan MAKEEV

Men certainly get worse than women; the elderly are heavier than the young; overweight people are heavier than overweight patientsPhoto: Ivan MAKEEV


– Yana Arturovna, how many patients did you have on average?

– About 10 – 14 days. But someone and 50 days.

– Have you noticed signs by which it can be assumed that the disease in the person brought is likely to go the hard way?

– Such studies were carried out in the world, our clinical practice confirmed them. Men certainly get worse than women; the elderly are heavier than the young; overweight people are heavier than overweight patients. Men with a classic male type of baldness, a lot of facial hair, we can say brutal men get sick harder.

– Under what conditions did you discharge patients?

– We acted as close as possible to the recommendations Ministry of Health: so that the temperature for three days was not higher than 37.5 degrees; so that C-reactive protein (an indicator of inflammation) is lower than 10 mg / l, and saturation, that is, the level of oxygen in the blood, is higher than 96%.


– How often do you get sick doctors and nurses?

– In the first month no one got sick at all. We have a very powerful epidemiological service. The head of the sanitary-epidemiological department, a senior researcher, correctly organized the whole process, and for the first two weeks she personally worked in the sanitary inspection room at the exit from the “red zone” and helped doctors and nurses who were exhausted after the shift safely remove protective clothing.

Then both people’s fatigue and viral load accumulated. By the middle of the second month, sick people began to appear. There were no seriously ill patients. We treated part of the staff in our observation, part of it was treated at home. In total, 18 people were infected from the medical staff (less than 10%).

– Doctors take something for prevention? Vitamins C, D, Zinc?

– I saw the recommendations of American nutritionists, they speak out positively about taking zinc, melatonin and vitamin C. There were somewhat conflicting data on vitamin D. But we did not give any such recommendations to our employees. We have all the prevention was associated with minimizing contacts and other measures of epidemiological safety.

Physicians are the heroes of our time.“If you think that you are special and that a pandemic will not affect you, you are deeply mistaken,” listen to what the doctors who are fighting with coronavirus say


“They used a cure for gout against COVID”: How patients were treated in a hospital that showed the best results in Moscow

The results of treatment at the university clinic of Moscow State University were the best in the capital. “Komsomolskaya Pravda” learned the details of how doctors and scientists saved severe patients [Часть 1]

Virologist told whether it is possible to disinfect masks from coronavirus in sunlight

And also why the epidemic is gaining strength in southern countries and whether the sun affects the incidence – all this in an interview with George Vikulova (details)


Director Alexei Uchitel – about the new nudity of Christina Asmus: “I was amazed!”

Each has its own isolation. Someone got stuck in Bali, someone climbed away into the wilderness, someone does not leave the city apartment. And here Director Alexey Uchitel (“Walk”, “Land”, “Diary of his wife”) is completing work on a new painting – “47”, dedicated to the journey of Victor’s tomb Tsoi to the northern capital after deadly Accident in 1990.

In a conversation with the writer Alexander Tsypkin, based on the works of which the series is already being shot, the director remembered how he convinced Tsoi to star in his film and why


“When we shot“ Rock ”in 1986, none of that company knew me – neither Grebenshchikov nor Garkusha. Who knows who I am? The KGB or something else. AND [чтобы наладить контакт] I chose the most silent – Tsoi. And he said: “Listen, Victor, let me come with an operator, a camera to your boiler room, and we will sit with you for a shift – and he was on duty for two days – and we’ll shoot. Not a single question, I swear, I will. As it is, it is. Then you come – take a look. If you don’t like it, we’ll disperse. ” And these were the first frames of the stoker, which now often show. I saw a lot of things: different people came and drank, but I honestly restrained myself – I didn’t move anything, I didn’t say “come here”. Perhaps that’s why it turned out to make a film. And then they came to my native Leningrad documentary studio in the director’s room with the whole Kino group – they watched in silence, went out in silence. I think: Christmas trees, sticks, what is there? I say: “Vit, tell me! Did you like it or not? ” And in response there was one word: “Normal.” This word gave me a sharp pass to life. After that, no one asked who I am and what they eat me with. ”

Frame from the movie “Rock”


“When a terrible accident occurred (Viktor Tsoi crashed on August 15, 1990 after the collision of his Moskvich in the oncoming lane with the Ikarus bus, which was driven by Janis Fibigs, on the highway SlokaTalsi – Aut.) From material that was not included in the Rock, we mounted the picture “The Last Hero”, then I met the driver of Ikarus, who was driving, and spoke with the investigator. Then it settled down with me. When you go and don’t know who Tsoi is … and then life changes abruptly (the driver was found not guilty, but nevertheless became known throughout the USSR – Aut.). The story of our picture “47” begins with an accident, and then begins the journey of the bus with Tsoi’s coffin in Petersburg. A kind of roadflies. The one who is driving does not know who all these people close to Choi are (Ricochet performed by Ilya Del, wife Natalya Reasons performed by Paulina Andreeva etc.), but they don’t know what kind of driver it is.

About 7-8 years ago, Sasha Gonorovsky (“The Land”, “From Five to Seven”) wrote the script, but we did not shoot. I thought that it was irrelevant, but interest in Tsoi is growing more and more every year. This is a mystery that no one will solve. With all due respect and Vysotskyand to Okudzhavaaccording to how often they sing, Choi overtook them. ”

In December, I starred in the full-length film Whaling. This is not horror)))), this is drama. I played the girl from the video chat Uuuf))) But I hasten to upset you, there were no naughty scenes. It’s even straight offensive. But there was my longest double in my career, which lasted 43 minutes. Studio: @ Production: Russia, Poland Gen. producer: Aleksey Uchitel Director and screenwriter: Philipp Yuryev Camera-man: Mikhail Khursevich, Yakov Mironchev Which image from the movie do you like more?


“At our Rock studio, we also shoot full-length debuts. One of my students Philip Yuriev seven years he wrote the script for the painting “Whalers”, which he then shot in Kamchatka. A stunning story will soon be shown at one of the major festivals, if it takes place. So, according to the plot, whalers are watching a computer showing a undressing girl [из секс-чата]. And this heroine was supposed to play Christina Asmus. She read the script, she liked it, agreed. Then the film “Text” comes out, this whole story takes place (after naked scenes with Ivan Yankovsky the actress’s husband, Harik Kharlamov, was sucked as a cuckold, in the end couple gets divorced and assures that the cinema has nothing to do with it – Auth.). And then an agent calls me and explains that Christina can’t act in our scene. I begged them to come to the studio, Asmus apologized for a long time that it would not work. Hoping for nothing, I turned on her 10 minutes of the film, she looked and said: “That’s it. Let’s. When to shoot? ” I asked again: “Are you not afraid that they will start rinsing again?” “This is my business,” she said firmly and starred wonderfully. I was amazed! ”


“This is not vulgarity, but real life”: Christina Asmus told how she decided on the bed scene in the new film

For the sake of the role in the 18+ tape, the actress first completely undressed on the screen and herself shot intimate shots on the phone (details)


Al-Nahar TV: Pyramids arrested Dunga due to “contacting Awad” .. The player suffocated with the Zamalek goalkeeper

The journalist Omar Rabi Yassin revealed the scenes of the altercation that occurred between Nabil Imad “Dunga”, the Pyramids player, and Mohamed Awad, Zamalek goalkeeper due to his recent infection with the Corona virus.

Omar Rabie Yassin said through the “Number One” program that he presents on the “Al-Nahar” channel: “There is a state of tension and anxiety in the halls of the Pyramids Club in the past hours, after Mohamed Awad, the goalkeeper of Zamalek, announced that he was infected with the Corona virus, due to the mixing.” Dunga, Zamalek goalkeeper in recent days.

He added: “The Pyramids officials learned that Dunga was sitting with Awad and even the women staying with him at his house in the past days, and they decided that all the players should undergo a Corona swab for the third time in order to ensure everyone’s safety. They also decided to freeze Dunga from participating in group exercises.”

He concluded: “Dunga made a phone call to Awwad and entered into a major verbal argument, accusing him of his work being exposed to the virus and concealing from him the truth of the matter.”

It is noteworthy that Mohamed Awad, the first team goalkeeper in Zamalek Club, announced that he had contracted the new Corona virus.

The Pyramids club revealed a “negative” result of the second sample of tests that were subjected to team players, the technical and administrative staff, and those working on the examination of the new Corona virus.


The Russian Embassy reported the threats after the publication of the NYT on the Taliban :: Society :: RBC

Previously, the newspaper published an article which stated that Russia had allegedly announced a reward to the Taliban for the murder of the US military and NATO in Afghanistan. The Embassy called the charges “fake news”

Photo: Ting Shen / Zuma / TASS

Employees of Embassy of Russia in Washington and London began to receive threats after the publication of the New York Times (NYT) about the alleged announcement by Russia of a reward for the murder of the US military in Afghanistan. This was reported by the Russian Embassy in Washington on his Twitter page.

The Embassy called the charges in the article “baseless and anonymous.” The Embassy also attached to my post screenshots with threats. One of them is a link to the NYT article is accompanied by the caption “Let’s declare a “reward” for your diplomats.”

In this regard, the Embassy asked via Twitter to the New York Times with a call to stop creating fake news lead to danger to life.

Separately, the Embassy addressed to the US authorities. “We demand U.S. authorities to take effective measures to ensure its obligations under the Vienna Convention on diplomatic relations of 1961”, — stated in the message of the Embassy.

Article 29 of the Convention States that the person of a diplomatic agent (the head of the diplomatic mission or of a member of the diplomatic staff of the mission) is inviolable. “The receiving state shall treat him with due respect and shall take all appropriate measures to prevent any attack on his person, freedom or dignity”, — stated in the Convention.


MTS-the Bank complained of the theft of money from the card :: Finance :: RBC

What they say affected customers

RBC has communicated with clients, said about the thefts. Withdrawals from accounts without their knowledge occurred from late March to early June. Most accounts tied to credit cards, there are also cases of withdrawal from debit cards and savings accounts. RBC said 11 clients in total, with their words, they stole more than 1.8 million rubles.

How to tell clients MTS-Bank, the most thefts occurred on the same scheme: the scammers have blocked the mobile number of the customer (mobile operator most affected is the MTS, there are also cases of blocked customers of MegaFon, Beeline and Tele2), then changed to Bank customer number in your received account access and online banking and transferred money. “Watching their stories in the personal accounts of MTS and MTS Bank, I learned that the service “Voluntary lock room” I was hooked 4.06.2020 at 22:55. And all fraudulent transactions were carried out with 5.06.2020 02:20 and 02:50″, — says one of the victims, Yuri, who asked not to mention his name.

The representative of MTS said that complaints about the service in the last month from clients have been received (affected customers in conversation with RBC said that addressed to MTS). Representatives of “VimpelCom” (brand “Beeline”) and “MegaFon” reported that the company did not record complaints from clients in a similar situation. Tele2 did not respond to a request RBC.

The CPS reported types of fraud during a pandemic

How the crooks could steal the money

  • In these schemes, attackers can first call the call-center operator and ask to temporarily block the room (it is possible, for any operator, e.g. in case of theft of phone) — for this we need to know the passport details of the victim, says the employee of one of the operators. Then the scammer, knowing the passport data, can call the Bank’s call center and ask them to bind another phone number instead. This would allow him to get full access to one-time SMS passwords sent to the linked phone number to confirm the operation.
  • RBC appealed the call-center MTS-Bank question, how to change number linked to the account. The call centre operator said that now this can only be done in person at the office, although a couple of days ago, there existed an opportunity to change the room through the call center, knowing only the passport data and a code word. In a press-service of the Bank representatives explained that the room can be changed only inside the MTS, the Bank branch or at an ATM.
  • If the scammers were able to access phone number and then Bank account, knowing the passport data and a code word that could leak personal data of the customers, MTS-Bank, says founder and CTO of DeviceLock Oganesyan: “In the hands of fraudsters could get as a complete database with passport data and a code word, and just with the names of customers and their balance of the account. In the second case, the attackers could choose customers with the largest amounts in the accounts and order the service “punching” their data from the operator and the Bank. The cost of such services in banks can reach 15 thousand. cellular operators Have “piercing” room is 800 rubles. up to 4.5 thousand rubles, the lock number can be from 3.5 thousand rubles. and above (follows from the ads posted on the darknet. — RBC)”.
  • To seize the code word can only Bank employees with a certain level of access continues, the head of directions “Compliance” and “Audit” of the security Department of the Softline group Ilya Tikhonov. “I can assume that this situation occurred either inside (special people in the Bank provides the service “punching”. — RBC) or target a well-organized attack on the servers of the Bank”. Banal leak of personal data just did not give criminals the opportunity to organize such a scheme of plunder of means, as in one database is usually not stored and passport details, and a code word, said Tikhonov. According to experts, blocking a phone number in this case was necessary, rather, to ensure that potential victims have not received the notification about change of data tied to the account.
  • Forced change of passwords by the Bank (MTS Bank held it at the end of may), may indicate a strengthening of security measures in case of suspected compromise of client credentials that attackers are unable to use them, for example, go to the user’s personal account, says head of security analysis of web applications Positive Technologies Jaroslav Babin.

VTB warned about fraud via the job advertisement

In some cases, the Bank must return the money

The victims were applied in MTS-Bank, addressed to law enforcement and CPS. At the Bank they said that the review of the incident will take 60 days, said several interlocutors RBC. One of the victims, Mr Zonov, discovered the theft on March 31, a statement the Bank filed the next day, however, despite the fact that the period of examination of the appeal already happened, received no response. The term for consideration of such appeals established by the law “About national payment system” and is 30 days to verify the transactions made inside the country and 60 days for cross-border transactions: if the Bank has designated a period of 60 days, then the surgery could be performed abroad, explains partner of the bar Association Pen & Paper Anatoly Loginov.

The other victim, Valery Kokorin, applied to the Bank in early April. The answer from the credit institution (RBC got acquainted with him) came in early June, it says that the card was translated to the map individuals of another Bank through a third-party acquiring network using a Protocol processing online transactions 3D Secure (the SMS code to the phone number specified in the Bank). The Bank refused to return the money, as the operation was confirmed by the introduction of a one-time verification code sent to your Bank the phone number (client says that the number of scams).

This answer Bank looks questionable, said Loginov: “the Bank refers to the norm of the Federal law “On PS”, under which he is obliged to return the money or to prove to himself that the customer has violated the procedure for the use of electronic means of payment and that this violation led to the Commission of the disputed transaction. That is, the Bank in this case should return the money, but all the same writes that the reason for this is not.”

According to the lawyer, in this case, fraudsters gained access to the means of payment and monetary funds of the clients without their participation and, if the Bank can prove the contrary, the refusal to return funds to the customer is illegal.

“Analysis of incoming requests shows that users themselves often convey information about the card fraud, which in turn excludes the liability of the Bank”, — noted in Rospotrebnadzor. At the same time, the office believed that “the Bank is obliged to prove that on his part, in the provision of services had taken appropriate measures to ensure its security and prevent access to, for example, the one-time password by unauthorized persons, and controversial operation carried out solely because of the violation of consumer safety regulations when using the card”.

Eugenia Chernyshova, Anastasia Skrynnikova

Yuliya Koshkina, Serhiy Sobolev, Alain Prokhorenko


Kozak revealed the details of the negotiations in Berlin :: Politics :: RBC

Dmitry Kozak

(Photo: Eugene Filippov / Global Look Press)

The deputy head of the presidential administration, Dmitry Kozak, said on the Russia 24 television channel that negotiations with the assistant chancellor of Germany, Angela Merkel, on resolving the conflict in southeastern Ukraine have been constructive.

“The dialogue was held in a constructive business spirit. We reached an agreement on mutual further actions for the peaceful settlement of the conflict in Ukraine, ”he said. Kozak added that consultations in Berlin will give an additional impetus to intensify negotiations in the “Norman format” and the Trilateral Contact Group.

The curator of negotiations on the Donbass in the Kremlin flew to Berlin against a virus

Dmitry Kozak

On May 13, a RBC source announced Kozak’s arrival in Berlin to discuss the situation in Ukraine. According to him, Germany invited a Russian representative to better understand the Russian line. The meeting was held in a bilateral format.

In February, the Kremlin reported that Kozak, who left the post of deputy prime minister in the presidential administration, would deal with Ukrainian issues. In mid-March, he first attended a meeting of the Tripartite Contact Group.


A contactless hydroalcoholic gel dispenser to save his business

The night brings advice, David Butet can testify. Faced with the fall in activity due to coronavirus from one of his companies, Strat design, specializing in events, communication, carpentry for institutional and commercial equipment, the idea suddenly came to this 42-year-old man. years, at 3 am a night without sleep, to make a dispenser of hydroalcoholic gel without contact with the hands, only actuated by a foot pedal – ” a time like this is not forgotten “He smiles.

The counters reset to zero

Strat design was in full development with a turnover increasing by 26% per year. With containment, all of our meters have been reset: zero activity, zero employees, zero euros in turnover. A real earthquake. I could never have imagined such a catastrophic situation Explains David Butet, who chairs the CDVA holding company created in 2007, of which Strat design, based in Longvic (Côte-d´Or), is a member.

→ LIVE. Coronavirus: the latest information in France and worldwide

He pursues : “ the fall had started before the official announcement of containment, in February with the ban on gatherings of more than 5,000 people: more fairs, more exhibitions, our worksites were canceled one after the other. And the day after March 16, almost all of our 47 full-time equivalent employees found themselves on short-time working

Multiply brain storming sessions

The entrepreneur did not give up. He was in a hurry: emergency measures to find aid, information on the deferral of charges, deferral of loans. Try everything to prevent a total sinking. Insomnia has followed one another: anxiety for the next day for the company, for its employees: ” I absolutely wanted to find a solution

David Butet has increased brainstorming sessions with friendly business leaders – ” in SMEs, we are close – and some of his collaborators who are unemployed. All participated. Before the sudden nocturnal illumination: “ I quickly blackened a sheet of paper. However, I even waited 9 a.m. to contact the manager of Strat design, who was unemployed like other employees …

Mobilize the network

Everything then went very quickly. In three days, the concept – a totem of one meter forty by 30 centimeters intended to contain the cans of gel – was developed and produced from scrap wood. As of April 19, the CEO has 170 calls to his network: town halls, restaurants, administrations, schools, shops, to which he has sent a product sheet. In one week, a hundred firm orders were taken with payment on order: from 300 to 365 € depending on the formula, plus 12 € for the gel – “ he had to. We ran out of cash

→ PRACTICAL. 10 practical tips to avoid getting coronavirus

This good start enabled the return to the field of four employees, including two carpenters. And on May 4, ten other employees found full-time in their company. ” All returned with pleasure, Recognizes the CEO. So far, 700 new orders have been paid with delivery no later than 17 days. In the process, a website and an e-shop followed to facilitate shopping.

To see further

David Butet allows himself to see further: “ some of our customers – the municipalities in particular – gave us the idea of ​​making a model for children to install in schoolyards, public gardens. We work there from recycled plastics ” Several weeks of work are thus guaranteed, which could be further consolidated with the prospect of other jobs. Other regions and large groups, such as La Poste, have expressed their interest.

Five resellers have just been labeled. Today the CEO is delighted with this unexpected, lived success “ by all as an adventure, with the added pride of having played a role in the resumption of activity of their business. “


A representative of the US vice president denied media reports about his self-isolation :: Politics :: RBC

US Vice President Michael Pence did not go into isolation after being infected with coronavirus by his spokeswoman Katie Miller. This was announced by the official representative of Vice President Devin O’Malley, reports CNN.

“Vice President Pence will continue to follow the advice of the White House Medical Services and is not in quarantine. In addition, Vice President Pence plans to attend tomorrow. [в понедельник] in the White House, ”said the representative of Pence.

According to O’Malley, the US Vice President is tested daily to identify a new coronavirus that has shown a negative result.

The fact that Pence left for self-isolation, was reported on the eve by Bloomberg, citing sources.

Katie Miller is the wife of Stephen Miller, an adviser to US President Donald Trump. She contracted the coronavirus on May 9th. According to Trump, Miller did not contact him, but was in contact with Pence.

How heads of state defend themselves from coronavirus. Photoreport

In late April, while visiting a clinic in Minnesota, Mike Pence refused to wear a medical mask so as not to become infected with a coronavirus. Journalists present next to him asked Pence why he did not use the mask, unlike the officials who accompanied him. To which the US vice president replied that he was not sick with a coronavirus and confirmed that he regularly passed tests for coronavirus.

On May 10, after contact with a White House employee who confirmed the coronavirus, three members of the working group created by the White House to fight against coronavirus went to self-isolation. Among those affected are Robert Redfield, head of the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Stephen Khan, head of the Food and Drug Administration at the US Department of Health and Human Services, and Anthony Fauci, director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

According to Johns Hopkins University, more than 1.3 million cases of coronavirus infection have been detected in the United States. More than 79 thousand people died.


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Source: JHU,
federal and regional
anti-virus operations

Source: JHU, federal and regional anti-virus operations


How old people’s homes allow relatives to visit during Corona

SMaria Walter’s father has been in his room for two weeks. Bed, television, table, about fourteen square meters, that’s what it looks like. He is rarely allowed in the garden, he is brought lunch and takes it alone, he told his daughter on the phone. The measures are not so strict in every old people’s home in Germany. But everyone tries to protect the residents who belong to the Covid-19 risk group. In many cities, however, the virus has already reached old people’s homes, for example in Hamm, Duisburg, in Zwönitz in Saxony or in Saarbrücken. No end to the visit ban is in sight.

Stefanie Sippel

The homes want to keep the virus out. But how can this be done without the damage almost exceeding the benefits? “These are drastic measures. I can understand that very well, but I also notice from my father that the disadvantages can outweigh it, ”says Ms. Walter, who does not want to read her real name here because she fears negative consequences for her father in the home. Although she calls him regularly, she feels: “Sometimes I can’t get through to him”.


“It will be very sad not to have that contact with readers today”

Eduardo Mendoza (Barcelona, ​​1943) cannot bear the public acts that he now misses. The Cervantes 2016 award will today miss the “unbearable” noise and bustle of Sant Jordi. Also the “insufferable” pomp of the ceremony that will not take place in Alcalá de Henares, which he starred in four years ago and which does not wish anyone. It is hard for him to imagine an act with the Kings, the award-winning Margarit and the aged crowd dressed in morning coats and a mask. Optimistic about the recovery of the book after the nightmare of the virus, Mendoza now takes refuge in reading and claims the balsam of humor.

-We will live the strangest Book Day and Sant Jordi.

-It’s pitiful. It is very contradictory. Every year when this date arrives I think how often I can do what I could do to save myself from being on the street all day signing and with the burden of the crowd. And this time, which will not be the case, I think it will be a bigger pain. It will be very sad not to have that contact with the readers. The absurd situation we live in shows how much we miss what bothered us so much. Seeing the streets and empty beaches also pains. We criticized the tourists that crowded the streets a lot and now, if we had one, we would give it anything.

-We will also lack the speech by Joan Margarit in Alcalá.

-I wanted to call him. Poor. With what he will have suffered preparing it! It is true that it is a bad drink, a ceremony that I do not wish on anyone, but it is sad to miss it like Sant Jordi. It is a beating, although when you are deprived of something you miss it. Perhaps Margarit is glad to save the drink, for the moment, but I am sure it will be bad for her. This award is received once in a lifetime and not being able to pick it up is a bummer.

– You suffered a lot preparing your speech?

-I wrote it very quickly after thinking about it a lot. Get rid of it as soon as possible was my idea, but I rewrote it three or four times. Even the day before I was making corrections. It is not a circumstance to simply muddle through with four vulgarities. The appreciation must live up to the gift. It requires effort and concern but, well, suffer

“Humor always helps, even in terrible situations, let it be said without frivolizing,” says the writer and Cervantes Award 2016

it is not the word. I did suffer with the act. You are not used to being the star of the show.

-Deferred to autumn, it was hard to imagine the kings and the award-winning mask and morning coat.

-Yes. Of course it is a strange image: the maceros, the choir, the prickly pear and the entire collection of geeks that attend the act … so it better be postponed.

-How will the day of Cervantes and Sant Jordi go?

-Well, like the day of San Juan and San Pedro. Tucked home looking out the window. I take this opportunity to read the books that I no longer remember. Always several at once: a classic, a detective novel, and an essay. I am now with a history of the 19th century in Spain, with ‘War and Peace’ and also with a police novel by Ross McDonald that I had not read for years. What a cocktail.

-The bookstores will be closed. Should they open?

-No. Public managers have not been wrong about this. If measures such as confinement have been taken, as in almost all countries -even those who did not want to have ended up going through the hoop-, it had to be done. Whoever touches, touches, and has touched many There are even those who calculate that half of the bars and restaurants will not reopen. The book sector has suffered a lot, but I think it will recover. Maybe these days someone has discovered that reading is a good way to pass the time. Also that the books are interesting or that they are a good complement to TV.

– Humor is crucial in his work, as in Cervantes’. Is it more necessary today than ever?

-You have to take the situation with good humor, without considering it a joke. Humor always helps, even in terrible situations, said without frivolity and with the utmost respect for so many lost lives. Like everyone, I receive a huge amount of WhatsApp and messages with jokes, jokes, videos and photos that indicate that humor is essential. It feels good to me as it does to everyone else. It is better to resort to humor than to be sad and serious all day.

– it writes now or it paralyzes the situation to him?

-I was writing when it started, and I continue. At another rate because the situation, you want it not, affects your behavior. I am rather homemade. Unlike in my youth, being at home is my best plan. The general environment does not help concentration. Thinking that I have all the hours of the day makes me waste them, almost all of them. I continue with my routine, which is reading and writing, which has saved me for many years.

– The confinement, is the natural state of the writer?

-Yes, but once in a while it is recess time and you go to the bar with your friends, you go out to dinner or take a walk and you clear yourself. All that will return, but for now they have taken it from us.

-Will we go back to normal?

-I do not know what will happen. Making predictions about it is how to fill in pools. Something will change, of course, and it will affect us. But I would not know if the changes will be individual or collective. It is somewhat unpredictable.

-What book would you give away in Sant Jordi, even if it has to be virtual?

-It depends on who and under what circumstances. They always ask me, and I never know what to answer. I am not aware of news and I find it difficult to think of a hypothetical and abstract reader.