National Round-Up: British variant not as contagious as feared, claims SSI

Statens Serum Institut calculates the British variant of the coronavirus is 36 percent more contagious than the common strain – so not as bad as previously reported. Media in the UK have reported that it is 74 percent more infectious. 

Previously it had been calculated that the country could contain the British variant with a Reproduction Rate of below 0.66, but now this figure has been adjusted to 0.8. For the common version, the ideal rate is below 1.0.

The Reproduction Rate of the British variant is currently 0.82. The total number of cases rose by 65 from 318 to 383 between Monday and Wednesday afternoon. 

The variant now accounts for 6.6 percent of all cases, compared to 4.0 percent in Week 1. 

35 more deaths
The latest coronavirus figures, which were released on Wednesday afternoon, reveal there had been 886 new infections and 35 more deaths. Some 111,069 tests were carried out, so only 0.8 percent of the tests were positive. 

The infection rate is in line with recent figures, which are down 80 percent on this time last month. 

The number of people in hospital has fallen from 21 to 771, although some of these might have been fatalities. 

Over 3 percent of the nation have now started their vaccination course, with some already receiving their second dose.

Petition aims to take pressure off final year gymnasium students
Parliament will consider a citizens’ proposal to shake up the summer exam schedule for gymnasium students. The proposal grabbed the necessary 50,000 signatures in just 16 days. The proposal suggests that all B subjects (typically taught for two years) and C subjects (one year) should be removed as exams. It contends that this year’s graduating students have had far more virtual classes than the previous year’s, so they should be entitled to as much leeway as possible. However, some students are arguing it is not enough, as they fear their chances in the A subjects have also been damaged.

Good news for new firms as coronavirus compensation deadline is changed
Newly-established companies can make use of the coronavirus compensation schemes, it has been confirmed today. All companies founded before November 1 are eligible, confirms the Ministry of Trade and Industry. Previously the cut-off was March 9. “This will mean that the safety net that our aid packages constitute will be stretched even wider and will help even more companies than it already does at present,” enthused the relevant minister, Dan Jørgensen.

Prime minister condemns Danes holidaying in Dubai
PM Mette Frederiksen has condemned the number of celebrities and influencers who have escaped the lockdown in Denmark to enjoy sunshine holidays in the likes of Dubai. “I think I have to impose some restrictions on myself before I comment on it,” she said this week when asked in Parliament. “There is a reason why the world has gone red. There is a reason why we really ask everyone – including the Danish business community that we live on and depend on in this country – not to travel. It is really important that everyone listens to it.” It is not illegal to travel at the moment, as the governmental advice is only a recommendation. 

READ MORE: Daddy’s girl in Dubai … after all, what’s the harm as the risk of infection is probably lower!

Justice minister questions whether municipalities are testing enough
The justice minister, Nick Hækkerup, yesterday summoned representatives of Denmark’s 98 municipalities to find out why they are not making more use of the mobile coronavirus test units that have been made available to them free of charge. Most municipalities have said they do not need them, even though many sectors, such as daycare, have said there is a need for them to visit their workplace. A recent DR survey reveals that seven out of ten daycare institution managers want regular testing of their staff.  

People in their 50s the most likely to get infected … or at least this week
People in their 50s are reportedly catching up youngsters in their 20s, the country’s most infected age bracket by decade. Over the last week, people in their 50s have accounted for 1,140 of the country’s 7,300 infections, according to Statens Serum Institut – a 16 percent share. In contrast, those in their 20s, 30s and 40s only accounted for shares ranging from 13-15 percent.

Kindergarten worker pleads guilty to child pornography charges
A 41-year-old male kindergarten worker yesterday appeared in Aalborg Court to face child pornography charges. It is alleged he has taken 1,300 photos of children in his care at a kindergarten on Feggesundvej in Aalborg East, where he is a substitute teacher. The man has already pleaded guilty to the charges, admitting the temptation to take photos was too large.