Norway has chosen to prioritise the elderly in its vaccination strategy.
“We are seeing a reduction in the number of people admitted to hospital, as it is the older people who become ill and have to go to hospital,” Specialist Director Frode Forland at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH) told newspaper VG.
“We are seeing fewer outbreaks in facilities for older people. I think we can view this as a clear indication that we are starting to see the effects of the vaccine,” Forland continued.
As of Monday, 233,000 Norwegians had received the first dose of the vaccine, while 71,400 had also received the second dose, according to data from NIPH.
The data shows that while eleven people with coronavirus on average where admitted to hospital each day in January, this number had dropped to five in February.
An overview compiled by VG also shows a clear drop in the number of new Covid-19 cases among elderly people.
In total, 66,800 people in Norway have been diagnosed with coronavirus, while 593 deaths have been recorded.
Forland said he is optimistic that Norway may manage to keep the pandemic under control.
“I believe and hope that we can keep this in check, even though we may see local outbreaks, until we have vaccinated so many people that we may start easing restrictions,” he said.
“But we have some tough weeks ahead with local partial lockdowns,” he added.