Covid-19: Health authority expects a return to everyday life in Norway soon

Norway could soon return to normal everyday life without Covid measures, the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH) said in its latest risk assessment of the pandemic on Wednesday.

Aker Brygge Norway
The Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH) has said that the current wave of infection would peak in the coming weeks. Pictured is Aker Brygge, Oslo. Photo by Kamil Klyta on Unsplash

On Wednesday, the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH) published an updated risk assessment of the Covid-19 epidemic  in Norway.

The NIPH said that there are currently no clear benefits to postponing the spread of the epidemic in Norway with measures.

“Society, in a short time, can return to normal everyday life without special infection control measures against Covid-19 and without a significantly increased disease burden caused by Covid-19,” Camilla Stoltenberg, director of the NIPH, said in the report.

The current wave of infection was spreading slower so far this month than it had in January, according to the report.

However, the health institute also said that the epidemic would need to be continually monitored and that health services and companies should prepare for significant absenteeism due to coronavirus.

READ ALSO: What Covid-19 rules are still in effect in Norway?

The current wave of infection is expected to peak in the coming weeks before plateauing over the winter holidays and then declining in March. 

“We expect that the wave of infection will increase for a few more weeks, possibly flattening out in the winter holiday weeks, before this wave declines and reaches a low level in March,” the institute wrote in its report.

It also said that it was likely that infections would peak in different parts of the country at different times.

Additionally, the NIPH said that it was probably that between three to four million in Norway could become infected with Covid-19 this winter.

It also predicted that a new wave of infection could probably occur later this year.

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Norway scraps Covid-19 self-isolation recommendation

The advice to isolate for four days after testing positive for coronavirus in Norway has been axed, the government announced Tuesday.

Norway scraps Covid-19 self-isolation recommendation

Those who test positive for Covid-19 in Norway will no longer be asked to isolate themselves for four days after, Norway’s health minister announced in parliament on Tuesday.

“The specific advice to stay at home for four days after being infected with Covid-19 has been revoked,” Ingvild Kjerkol, Minister of Health, said.

Kjerkol also announced that responsibility for official public health advice relating to the pandemic would be delegated to the Norwegian Institute of Public Health.

Despite the advice being pulled with immediate effect, the health minister added that the pandemic was not over.

“The pandemic is by no means over. There is great uncertainty about the erasure of infection, which virus variants we can encounter and when a new variant can occur. Therefore, there is still a need for good monitoring and preparedness to detect, assess, and handle an unfortunate development early,” Kjerkol said.

She said that the country would learn to live with the virus moving forward.

“Now we will learn to live with coronavirus in society,” she said.

The government said that it would be asking local authorities to retain Covid testing capacity, so they would be able to test at least one percent of the population should a future breakout occur.