Denmark will now not categorize COVID-19 as a “socially important illness” as of February 1, Well being Minister Magnus Heunicke wrote in a letter to the parliament’s epidemiology committee.
Based mostly on the suggestions of the parliament’s epidemiology committee, the federal government is able to scrap nearly all social restrictions by the top of the month. The “guidelines will lapse when the sickness will now not be categorized as ‘socially important’ on 1 February 2022,” Heunicke wrote within the letter.
This announcement comes as a brand new subvariant of Omicron, BA.2, is gaining a foothold in Denmark, accounting for nearly half of reported circumstances. Different nations corresponding to Norway, the U.Ok. and Sweden are additionally experiencing an analogous enhance of the subvariant, however to not the identical stage as Denmark.
Though the arrival of Omicron BA.2 has brought about a renewed surge in infections — making Denmark the EU nation with the very best incidence of coronavirus — its well being authorities say that hasn’t brought about any enhance in hospitalizations.
The classification of a illness as “socially important” signifies that the federal government can introduce far-reaching measures corresponding to shutting companies and making mask-wearing necessary.
This echoes a wider pattern in EU nations to deal with Omicron as an endemic illness, circulating freely however posing much less of a risk to societies. Though Omicron is much less harmful than the sooner Delta pressure, some well being specialists undertake a extra cautious line, arguing that the main focus needs to be on suppressing the virus, quite than residing with it.
Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen is anticipated to carry a press convention later Wednesday to substantiate the easing of coronavirus restrictions within the nation.