Russian President Vladimir Putin, center, wearing a protective suit enters a hall Tuesday during his visit to the hospital for coronavirus patients in Kommunarka settlement outside Moscow, Russia. For some people the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, but for some it can cause severe illness including pneumonia. Credit: Alexei Druzhinin | Kremlin Pool Photo via AP

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MOSCOW — Russian President Vladimir Putin visited a Moscow hospital for coronavirus patients and wore a protective suit.

During a visit to the Kommunarka hospital on the outskirts of Moscow, Putin praised its doctors for high professionalism, saying they were working “like clockwork.”

After a meeting with the hospital’s chief doctor, Putin donned a yellow hazmat suit with a mask and went into the area where patients were treated.

Russia has registered 495 cases of the coronavirus and reported no deaths, which contrasts with the quick spread of contagion in Europe. Some experts say the low numbers could be attributed to a relatively slow pace of screening. Until recently, just one lab in Novosibirsk was analyzing tests from all over Russia and authorities have moved to open new labs and increase the number of tests.

Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin reported to Putin the number of coronavirus tests performed in the capital will increase from about 3,000 a day to 13,000 later this week. Sobyanin said the situation could quickly exacerbate.