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Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Monday

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

Denmark's women's national handball team celebrate on Sunday after taking third place in the World Championships.
Denmark's women's national handball team celebrate on Sunday after taking third place in the World Championships. Photo: Liselotte Sabroe/Ritzau Scanpix

Aarhus hospital redeploys nurses as Covid-19 admissions rise

25 nurses at Aarhus University Hospital will from today not work at their regular wards as the hospital reshuffles staff to manage an increasing number of Covid-10 patients.

Nurses are to be moved to acute and infectious diseases wards where most Covid patients are admitted, broadcaster DR reports.

“This is a consequence of the expected increase in the number of hospitalised patients, which has caused us to add seven additional beds to the two wards,” hospital director Poul Blaabjerg told local radio station PR Østjylland.

Nurses from various highly specialised, non-Covid-related areas will be trained to care for Covid patients, according to the report.

Omicron Covid-19 cases increase by 3,301

The total number of cases of the Omicron variant in Denmark is now 18,753, with an increase to that figure of 3,301 reported on Sunday. The numbers come from the State Serum Institute.

The variant is expected to become dominant over the prevalent Delta.

Sunday’s total for new confirmed cases of Covid-19 was 8,522. The number of people in hospital increased by 27 to 560.

Copenhagen offers cash bonus to as incentive for childcare workers

Copenhagen Municipality is to offer a cash bonus of 15,000 kroner to daycare staff who have worked for the municipality for eight years or to newly-qualified carers with a year of continual employment, newspaper Politiken writes.

A majority in the city government earlier this year set aside 144 million kroner to be spent on recruiting and retaining staff for the sector.

The newly-announced bonuses, agreed between the municipality and unions for the child carers, will be paid for brom that funding.

Sunshine forecast until early sunset

With the winter solstice – the day with the shortest daylight time – coming up tomorrow, sunset is about as early (and sunrise as late) as it gets today.

The good news is that while the sun is up, it will probably be shining.

Meteorological agency DMI tweeted that most of the country will have sunshine today and notes that temperatures could drop to 2-5 degrees Celsius.

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Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

A possible 'second wave' of Ukrainian refugees, the Moderates downplaying the importance of joining government, and big savings from heat adjustments are among the top news stories in Denmark on Thursday.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

Denmark braces for potential ‘second wave’ of Ukrainian refugees 

With much of Ukraine’s infrastructure in shambles after targeted Russian attacks, NATO is telling European countries to prepare to receive more refugees ahead of a harsh winter. In response, municipal governments in Denmark are calling for a new strategy to distribute Ukrainian refugees across the country, broadcaster DR reports. 

Currently, the Danish Immigration Service uses a ‘distribution key’ to decide where to settle refugees — as it stands, larger municipalities are expected to host a number of refugees proportional to their population. 

But Copenhagen municipality in particular says it’s flat out of housing. “They should look at where there are municipalities in the country with empty houses where people can be accommodated, and then distribute according to that instead of distributing according to the size of the municipalities,” Jens-Kristian Lütken, Copenhagen’s ‘mayor’ of employment and integration, tells DR. 

“If there is a new wave of displaced people from Ukraine, they will initially be staying in hotel rooms,” Lütken adds. 

Thus far, 34,945 Ukrainian refugees have been granted temporary protection in Denmark, DR reports. That’s far below initial projections of up to 100,000 from spring 2022. 

READ MORE: ‘Over a quarter’ of Ukrainian refugees in Denmark now working

Moderates downplay importance of joining government 

After another round of negotiations with Mette Frederiksen, Moderate leader Lars Løkke Rasmussen says it’s beside the point if his party joins Frederiksen’s vision of a ‘broad, central’ government, newswire Ritzau reports. 

“For us, it’s not a separate ambition to be part of such a government,” he said outside of the prime minister’s official residence at Marienborg. “Whether we are in or not is less important. But we want to put ourselves in a position where we can influence the content. That’s what matters.” 

However, Rasmussen adds “it strikes me that Mette Frederiksen and I go a long way towards sharing the analysis of what’s good for Denmark.”

Danish municipalities save big with heat reductions 

Beginning in October, almost all Danish public buildings, from schools to town halls, turned the thermostat down to 19 degrees in an effort to save on energy costs as prices skyrocket. A DR survey shows some municipalities generated savings much higher than expected. 

Municipal buildings in Tårnby consumed 20 percent less in October 2022 compared to October 2021, even after compensating for this year’s mild autumn, DR says. And Fredensborg city hall has seen a 45 percent drop in consumption compared to October of the previous year. 

“There are blankets here at the town hall, if there is anyone who thinks that it is too cold at 19 degrees,” Fredensborg mayor Thomas Lykke says. “People are doing breaktime calisthenics and wearing finger gloves, so we try to keep warm, but I don’t see it being a problem for our employees.” 

READ MORE: Energy prices in Denmark rise as winter weather sets in 

Captain Kjær insists Denmark still ‘amazing’ despite World Cup flop

Simon Kjær insisted that Denmark are still a top team despite their dismal 1-0 defeat to Australia which knocked them out of the World Cup at the group stage. 

Denmark had come into the tournament on a high after getting to the semi-finals of last year’s European Championship and beating world champions France home and away in the Nations League.    

But they slumped out of tournament in humiliating fashion, finishing bottom of Group D with just one point and a single goal scored after Mathew Leckie fired Australia into the last 16.    

“We didn’t deliver as a team, massively disappointed but that’s part of football, we were flying very high in the Euro, now we’re pretty far down,” said captain Kjær, who sat out of Wednesday’s match injured.