Personal experience: how I got a certificate for the Moscow swimming pool

Personal experience: how I got a certificate for the Moscow swimming pool
Personal experience: how I got a certificate for the Moscow swimming pool
24 August 2020, 15:06Society
In the face of a pandemic, many people, fearing infection, preferred urban recreation and swimming pools. Municipal services quickly caught the trend and made another business out of the costs of the epidemic.

In addition to earning money on masks, the wearing of which is mandatory in many places, swimming pools have also become a profitable place.

Irina Mishina

Now getting into the pool is not an easy task. The fact is that, according to the order of the Moscow Department of Health, it became almost impossible to get a free certificate to the pool. The official website of the Moscow Mayor,, confirms this: for children, a certificate to the pool is issued free of charge, provided that the child has passed the appropriate tests. "For adults, this service is paid, as it is not included in the territorial program of compulsory health insurance (MHI). The exception is those who are recommended to visit the pool based on the results of medical examination and preventive medical examinations".

Bingo! I just fell under the "exception". In my discharge from the Botkin hospital, the discharge read: "Swimming in the pool is recommended". Armed with an extract signed by the attending physician and professor, head. department of the hospital, I went to the district clinic. But there they were not happy about my discharge. The secretary of the chief physician of the first branch of the 209th polyclinic of the Moscow DZM said that the Health Department categorically forbade them to issue certificates to the pool. And my statement in this case is not a decree to them. What to do? “Call the pool, they will recommend which doctor will allow you to swim”, - the secretary of the chief doctor replied.

Having called the pool, I learned that they are still provided with certificates from the city polyclinic # 209. And they even gave me a phone number to find out everything. I dialed this "magic" number.

"Hello! Department of paid services. What did you want?" - the receiver answered me affectionately. I briefly outlined my story: they say, there is a conclusion from the hospital where I was being treated and a discharge with a recommendation to regularly visit the pool. But for this, according to the clinic's administration, I need a certificate. “The department of paid services issues certificates to the pool. The cost is 1 thousand rubles. On what day should I sign up for a specialist?”, - the receiver answered me tenderly.

Свою скупую запись - разрешение на посещение бассейна - доктор скрепил подписью на таджикском языке. На всякий случай.

To be honest, I was confused not so much by the “thousand rubles for a certificate” as by the need to go to the other end of Moscow during working hours, it is not known which specialist. And I called the pool again. “Do you accept certificates from private clinics?” I asked. “Yes, we do. You can provide a certificate from any private clinic, from any specialist, in any form, as long as it says that you can visit the pool. " - "Certificate of tests for coronavirus, from a dermatologist, HIV tests - do you need to provide all this?" - I asked. “Not necessarily,” the pool employee answered confidentially.

Without hesitation, I signed up for a private clinic, which is located right in my house. Having chosen a doctor with an undefined specialty "general practitioner", I went to get a certificate. The doctor listened to me, ran to the cashier to find out “how much such a certificate would cost” and returned with the good news: “700 rubles will cost you my appointment and the certificate. Swim to your health! ". After that, for some reason, the doctor measured the oxygen level in my blood with a heart rate monitor and took up the form. I stopped him: “Wait, my discharge contains fresh negative tests for HIV, hepatitis, and also the results of a PCR test for coronavirus, it is also negative. Maybe you should write all this in the certificate?" - “Why write for a long time? How can all this be formulated in one phrase?", - the doctor asked. I gave the doctor the wording that I found on the Internet, but he did not bother himself with such a long entry and simply wrote: "You can visit the pool and has no contraindications to this". He sealed his conclusion with a seal and signature in a language unknown to me. "What kind of signature is this?" - I asked. “In Tajik”, - Dr. Niyazov answered simply.

For the sake of fairness, I must say that for a reference to the pool, my 11-year-old daughter passed a lot of tests at the district clinic and only after that received a certificate. Is free. That is, a child examined from head to toe will be able to swim in the pool, which can be used by adults, many of whom have not been examined by a dermatologist, have not been tested for HIV, hepatitis and PCR for coronavirus. It follows from this that the likelihood of infection of a child in this very pool is quite high. The question arises: why, in this case, examine children so carefully and for a long time?

Is a visual examination sufficient to determine the dangerous diseases for the surrounding people in a person who is going to visit the pool? With this question, we turned to Konstantin Smirnov, Candidate of Medical Sciences, dermatovenerologist of the "CM-Clinic".

“If the administration of the pool observes all the rules for its maintenance, the risk of infection is extremely small. The process of water preparation, disinfection of premises (up to lockers with clothes), as well as the availability of special medical certificates for visitors should be clearly monitored. Routine exams in front of the pool include fecal ovum test, blood test for HIV, and visual inspection. If all is well, the doctor issues a certificate to the patient. If the doctor reveals a deformation of the skin or nails, he prescribes an additional examination, on the basis of which he decides whether to allow a person to visit the pool or not. Unfortunately, hygiene standards are not followed in all pools and fitness clubs. Therefore, there is a risk of contracting various diseases. Most often in the pool you can "meet" fungal lesions of the skin and nails: ringworm and onychomycosis (nail fungus). The second most popular disease is scabies. It can be easily picked up if the care of the lockers is not followed. In children, pustular skin lesions caused by streptococci and staphylococci are most common. The risk of contracting the Coxsackie virus has also increased recently. This is the so-called "Turkish virus", which, in addition to general symptoms (fever, chills, vomiting, malaise), causes blistering rashes", - explained Konstantin Smirnov, Ph.D., dermatovenerologist.

As for the spread of coronavirus through water, according to microbiologists, disinfection with various chemicals, including chlorine, inactivates the virus, although there is no exact confirmation of this yet. "Infection with coronavirus through the water in the pool is possible if a person with COVID-19 takes water in his mouth and spits it out - then the infection can accidentally enter the body of another swimmer", - explained Viktor Larichev, virologist at the Gamaleya Center for Epidemiology and Microbiology.

So PCR for the presence of COVID-19 is not at all an unnecessary analysis when visiting the pool. But no one demands it ... The main thing is to make a profit. And the payment for a certificate to the pool is, apparently, a new creative approach of Moscow polyclinics to replenish their budget.

“The system makes money by violating our rights. We live in a “market”, we are told. And one type of medical service after another is consistently withdrawn from the CHI. But at the same time in all these innovations there is no single order and logic. Therefore, the healthcare system sells our rights at its own discretion", - said the head of the Patient Protection League, Alexander Saversky, to NI.

However, the coronavirus has long become part of the business for many. What is the requirement to visit almost all crowded places wearing masks - shops, shopping centers and even museums, small and large. Let me remind you that the price for masks today ranges from 15 rubles for 3 pieces in the E-pharmacy and exceeds 250 rubles for 5 pieces in the Magnit network. On a national scale, this is a profitable business. At the same time, no one says that wearing masks is a rather controversial form of protection against infection.

Alexander Saversky, head of the All-Russian League for the Protection of Patients' Rights, told NI: “About the masks. Look: people with coronary artery disease, COPD, asthma, etc. - How do they live, how do they go to the store, how do they go to work? And without work - starvation. And they go, and? And someone dies. What will happen at the showdown? Death from a leading disease. Not a word about masks. And yes, hypoxia sneaks up unnoticed, the blood thickens... People are tired of controversial restrictions, one of which is the mandatory wearing of masks under the threat of a fine. Back in April, the WHO said that masks should only be worn by sick people and specialists from high-risk areas (medical workers), but in June it changed its position. A number of scientists also disagree with this position. They say that it is practically impossible to achieve the correct wearing of masks (changing every two to three hours, and throwing out the old one correctly), in particular, because of the price. This means that masks can do more harm than good, even to healthy people. Uncertainty is confirmed by quotes from documents of the same WHO, which states: "There are currently no data on studies that would assess the effectiveness and possible unwanted effects of general or targeted and prolonged use of masks".

The petition, which is posted on , says, in part: “The cost of wearing masks when worn correctly during the current economic crisis is an unaffordable luxury for many people. If the state considers it necessary, it should provide it free of charge".

...The funny thing is you know what? The certificate, signed in Tajik, which cost me 700 rubles, was accepted in the pool without question. But at the same time they advised... to put on a mask in the dressing room. If this is not absurd, then what is it?

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