Today in Norway: A roundup of the latest news on Monday

Today in Norway: A roundup of the latest news on Monday
Read about how Christmas may have affected infection rates and whether lockdowns led to a baby boom in Norway in today's roundup. Pictured are the Lyngen Alps in Troms og Finnmark. Photo by Kevin Bessat on Unsplash
Find out what’s going on in Norway on Monday with The Local’s short roundup of important news.

Christmas may have affected Covid-19 infections 

Espen Nakstad, assistant health director at the Norwegian Directorate of Health, said that Christmas may have led to a downtrend in Covid infections over the last few days.

Infection numbers have dipped somewhat over the festive period following record daily Covid cases earlier in December. Nakstad said that fewer people getting tested over the holidays contributed to lower numbers of registered cases.

“We see clear signs of a Christmas effect in that the number of registered cases of infection falls more than the number of hospitalised. This is probably primarily due to fewer people getting tested at Christmas. Still, the low infection pressure we saw in many municipalities in the last week before Christmas may also have contributed,” Nakstad told newspaper VG.

Signs of a lockdown baby boom

Covid-19 lockdowns and restrictions in Norway may have led to a baby boom in Norway, according to recent statistics.

The figures, analysed by public broadcaster NRK, show that during the first nine months of 2021, 2,037 more children were born compared to the same period a year earlier.

The first spike in births followed the lockdown in Spring 2020, followed by a second after a summer of travel restrictions.

Physician Ferenc Mascali from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health’s birth registry said that the lockdown baby boom reverses a trend of declining birth rates.

 “This is interesting. Not least in light of the decline in the number of births annually, from 63,000 to 53,000 births during 12 years in Norway. It is surprising that the trend reverses approximately nine months after the closure of Norway in the spring of 2020,” the physician told NRK.

January this year was the first time the birth rate in Norway increased in several years.

2,214 new Covid-19 infections in Norway

On Sunday, 2,214 new Covid-19 infections were registered in Norway. This is 1,318 coronavirus cases less than the average for the previous seven days, which is 3,532. Sunday’s infection numbers are also 808 fewer than the same day a week before.

Lower cases tend to be recorded on weekends as less people get tested, and fewer samples are processed.

On Christmas day, there were 307 patients in hospital with Covid-19. Of those, 121 were in intensive care, and 83 were on a respirator.

Pictured is a graph of the total number of Covid-19 cases in Norway.
Pictured is the total number of weekly Covid-19 cases in Norway. Source: Norwegian Institute of Public Health.

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