In early December, the Russian Federal Medical Biological Agency informed TASS that a unit of cosmonauts and a number of Cosmonaut Training Center employees who come in direct contact with them during training would be vaccinated against COVID-19. The cosmonauts and the center staff will receive the Sputnik V vaccine developed by the Gamaleya Research Center for Epidemiology and Microbiology.
Vaccination began at Star City in December. The first ones to be inoculated were cosmonauts Oleg Artemyev and Nikolai Chub, as well as several employees working with the crews.
Russia registered the first COVID-19 vaccine in the world under the name of Sputnik V on August 11. The vaccine was developed by the Gamaleya Research Center for Epidemiology and Microbiology. Post-registration testing of the vaccine began in Moscow on September 7, with first volunteers getting the first vaccine shot on September 9. Overall, the trials include 40,000 people, 10,000 of whom are to get a placebo dose instead of the vaccine.
In early November, Russia’s inter-agency commission approved the crew of the 65th long-term expedition that will blast off aboard a Soyuz MS-18 crewed spacecraft from the Baikonur spaceport to the International Space Station in April 2021.