National Round-Up: New COVID-19 test to help keep mutation at bay

From today is it possible to detect if a person has been infected with a mutation of COVID-19 within a day due to changes made to the testing methods. The Danish heath authority is focusing particularly on the British variant.

The test itself won’t change and will be performed with the usual cotton swab. If the sample is positive, it will be run through a new test which in a day can tell if it is a mutated coronavirus.

In this way infected people can be notified faster. Previously, they have had to wait weeks to identify the mutation, thus posing a challenge to contact-tracing.

Focusing on the British variant
“If you find yourself in a situation in which you have to prioritise, it is clear that you have to prioritise the British variant over others, because it is more contagious,” Professor Allan Randrup Thomsen explained to DR.

It is also argued that focusing on this allows the authorities to assess the effectiveness of the current restrictions. They can monitor this by knowing how many new cases of the variant there are. It is expected it will outnumber other COVID cases by the middle of next month.

Those who are infected with COVID, regardless of whether it’s a mutation, still have to comply with the same measures and restrictions.

Dentists charging illegal corona fees
Dentists around Denmark are charging illegal fees to cover their additional expenses due to corona restrictions. The Danish Consumer Council condemned the practice, calling it a potential scandal. The government has previously stated that they are not allowed to surcharge their customers as they will be subsidised for the extra costs.

Vaccinations off to a promising start
The National Board of Heath has assessed that all vaccination efforts are on the right track. They meet two important targets so far: vaccinating all nursing home patients and approving two different jabs against COVID-19. The authorities have also rolled the jabs in the Faroe Islands and Greenland.

Politician affected by severe stress
Liberal Alliance chair Alex Vanopslagh is suffering from severe stress. Posting on Facebook, he writes how he has undergone treatment for his condition. He continues to represent his party but plans to participate less in parliamentary work.

Parliament partially closed down
Parliament partially shut down on Wednesday in an attempt to curb the spread of the coronavirus. Due to the closure, the proceedings of 12 out of 28 bills were postponed.  This is the second time the pandemic has limited the work of Parliament.

Danes to have less for their money – it’s for their own good!
The Danish Cancer Society in collaboration with major food companies has pledged to reduce portions in order to slow down the development of obesity in Denmark. The initiative is called ‘Yes thank you, a little less’. 7-Eleven has already announced that its jumbo snail will be 10 percent smaller.

Measures and travel restrictions extended
The current strict measures and travel restrictions are extended up to and including February 7 across the whole country. This is to maintain control over the spread of the British variant of the coronavirus. Other restrictions, including the mandatory wearing of facemasks when required, will remain in place until March.