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Today in Denmark: A round-up of the latest news on Friday

Find out what's going on in Denmark today with The Local's short round-up of the news in less than five minutes.

Today in Denmark: A round-up of the latest news on Friday
File photo: Ida Guldbæk Arentsen/Ritzau Scanpix

Over 4,000 Covid-19 infections in one day

This has been a rough week in Denmark’s battle against the coronavirus, with a partial lockdown barely extended to the entire country before the government decided those restrictions didn’t go far enough and decided on a stronger national lockdown, which will be fully in force by Christmas Day.

Denmark again reported a record number of new cases of the coronavirus on Thursday, exceeding 4,000 cases in a day for the first time. 4,034 cases were detected from 124,707 tests.

The number of hospitalised Covid-19 patients increased on Thursday by 23 to 516. That is just short of the peak hospitalisation total from the spring wave of the virus, which stood at 535 on April 1st.

But vaccination likely to begin this month

On the more hopeful side, Denmark could begin vaccinating vulnerable people and front-line health sector workers shortly after Christmas.

“Things are moving extremely fast. We hope for an approval within just a few days and if everything goes well, we'll be underway with vaccination shortly after that,” Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen said yesterday.

The first vaccines are already en route to Denmark in anticipation of approval by the European Medicines Agency.

Visiting restrictions eased for elderly care homes

Senior citizens living in care homes have had to deal with more hardship and isolation than most, not least during the Covid-19 pandemic. The Ministry of Health has announced that rules for visiting care homes are to be adjusted so that elderly people can have more visitors at their own accommodation.

Under previous rules, elderly people have been restricted to visits from their next of kin in their own accommodation and up to two close relatives in common rooms at care homes.

They will now be allowed two visitors in their own rooms, in an effort to make the visits more enjoyable, the ministry said.

Danish word of the year to be announced

Dansk Sprognævn, the regulatory council for the Danish language, is to announce its word of the year today.

You wouldn’t bet against it being pandemic-related, given that albuehilsen (elbow greeting), superspreder (superspreader) and social distancering (social distancing) have all been added to the reference book of new Danish words this year.

Previous Danish words of the year include post-truth and flygtningestrømme (refugee flow).

Danish vocabulary:

  • Pårørende: relatives, loved ones, closest family and friends
  • Besøg: visit (noun)
  • Nævn: regulatory board, committee

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TODAY IN DENMARK

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

An agreement on a change to the pay limit scheme, Covid infection rates, and the latest on monkeypox are among the top headlines in Denmark this Thursday.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

Parliament lowers salary required for pay limit scheme 

Yesterday evening, the Danish parliament agreed on a significant change to the pay limit scheme, which grants residence permits to foreign workers with job offers in Denmark above a yearly salary threshold. 

As of December 1st, salaries at or above 375,000 kroner will qualify for the scheme. (Based on today’s exchange rates, that’s the equivalent of $52,662, €50,394 and £43,355.)

It’s a 16 percent decrease from the current pay limit of 448,000, and the lowered threshold will exist on a trial basis for the next three years. 

The decision comes after months of political wrangling over the terms of the reduction. Supporters of the reform say the change is necessary to help alleviate soaring demand for labour in Denmark. 

Look out for a full report on this story on our website this morning.

READ ALSO: How can you get a work permit in Denmark if you are not an EU national? 

Serious illness stays low as Covid-19 case counts triple 

Since June 1st, positive PCR tests have nearly tripled in Denmark — and while hospital admissions for Covid patients have increased slightly, there hasn’t been a dramatic increase in serious illness from the virus, according to a press release from the National Board of Health. 

Health officials have kept a close eye on hospital admissions in light of BA.5., the new Omicron sub-variant that now accounts for the majority of cases in Denmark. Their analysis and studies in other countries suggest BA.5 does not cause more serious illness on a population level than previous variants. 

“We expect to look forward to a relatively calm summer, but we naturally keep an eye on whether there are changes in the infection situation,” Søren Brostrøm, director of the National Board of Health, told newswire Ritzau. 

Authorities earlier this week suggested the summer wave of infections is already waning.

What’s the status of monkeypox in Denmark? 

Two more cases of monkeypox were confirmed yesterday by the Ministry of Health, bringing the national tally to 18 since May 23rd. 

Officials have identified and vaccinated 22 close contacts to the known cases, the Ministry added. 

Since monkeypox can only be transmitted by touch when the characteristic rash with white blisters is already present, the risk to the population remains very low, scientists say. 

Thulesen Dahl leaves Danish People’s Party

Kristian Thulesen Dahl, former chairman and co-founder of the Danish People’s Party, has finally resigned after weeks of deliberation. His departure is the eleventh from the party in the past six months, leaving only five members in parliament. 

Thulesen Dahl says he will consider Inger Støjberg’s offer to join the Denmark Democrats, a new party currently gathering voter declarations to qualify for seats in parliament. 
READ ALSO: Danish People’s Party decimated by new high-profile departures 

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