Fourth COVID-19 wave hits Norway

Norwegian parliamentary building square

Photo: Gunnar Ridderström/Unsplash
A crowd gathers outside the Norwegian parliament building, while the threat of COVID-19 still looms.

Health authority sounds warning with Infection rate on the rise


Norway is currently in the middle of a fourth wave of COVID-19 infections, Espen Nakstad, assistant director of health at the Norwegian Directorate of Health, said on Aug. 26.

One day earlier, Norway recorded the highest daily number of infections, 1,093, since the peak of the third wave in March, following weeks of rising infections. 

“We are definitely in a fourth wave of infection now, but the vaccination rates mean that we currently do not have a large wave of hospital admissions as of today,” Nakstad told newspaper Dagbladet. 

As of Aug. 25, 52 people had been admitted to hospitals in Norway with COVID-19, and 16 patients were receiving intensive care, according to figures from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH). 

Health experts have predicted a rise in COVID-19 cases for weeks, and Nakstad said he expected coronavirus infections to reach 1,300 per day in early September.

Over the past few weeks, health authorities have said rising infection rates in Norway are currently not as serious as they would have been during previous waves of infection because of  high vaccine rates in Norway, ensuring the number of hospital admissions remains low as cases rise. 

Just under 90% of people 18 and older have received their first vaccine jab, while 60% are fully vaccinated. Nakstad has urged people to do their best to keep infections under control to ensure that there isn’t a surge of hospital admissions. 

The Norwegian government has said it would lift the last remaining measures once everyone 18 and older have received their second coronavirus vaccine jab. 

Municipalities will still be able to introduce their own rules on measures, such as face masks and social distancing, once national restrictions end.

This article originally appeared in the Sept. 3, 2021, issue of The Norwegian American.

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The Local

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