Russia’s COVID-19 vaccination drive slowly picking up speed

IKHALA, Russia (AP) — Russia’s rollout of its coronavirus vaccine is beginning to pick up speed in some of its more remote regions, but experts say the campaign is still moving slowly. That’s why elderly residents of Ikhala, a snow-covered village near the border with Finland, were relieved to hear they were finally going to get their shots. The region was hit hard by the virus in December. The experts blame the slow rollout on limited supplies of the vaccine, logistical difficulties in distribution and continued hesitance among some Russians. The country doesn’t regularly release data on its vaccination rates, but the number who have gotten at least the first shot appears to be between 2 million and 3.2 million.