‘Up to 70 percent’ of adults in Denmark have had Covid-19 since November 2021

As many as 7 in 10 adults in Denmark have contracted Covid-19 since last November, a study by health authorities suggests.

covid test
As many as 7 in 10 adults in Denmark may have had Covid-19 since last November, File photo: Bo Amstrup/Ritzau Scanpix

Close to 70 percent of the adult population of Debt have had Covid-19 in the last four and a half months, the national infectious disease agency State Serum Institute (SSI) said in a report released on Monday.

The data is taken from studies of blood from donors during the period.

According to SSI, the latest round of analyses evidence a marked increase in late February and early March in the overall total number of people infected since November.

“The presence of (Covid-19) antibodies has again increased dramatically over the last two weeks. As fewer are now tested for Covid-19 with antigen or PCR tests, we are pleased to be able to follow trends in the incidence of past infection with this research in the coming weeks,” Professor Christian Erikstrup of Aarhus University hospital said in an SSI statement.

The blood donors whose samples were used in the study are adults between the ages of 17 and 72 years. In the week commencing February 28th, blood from 5,771 donors was tested for the presence of Covid-19 antibodies. 51 percent had antibodies, 17 percent more than when the same analysis was conducted two weeks prior.

A projection of those results to the current date suggests that up to 70 percent of the adult population will have been infected with Covid-19 since the beginning of last November, SSI writes.

The Covid-19 epidemic is currently declining in Denmark after the many cases over the winter, with a latest estimate of the reproduction rate or R-number for the virus yesterday of 0.7. That means 10 people with the coronavirus pass it on to an average of 7 others, causing the epidemic to recede overall.

7,401 new cases of the virus were registered from 35,629 PCR tests in the latest daily update on Tuesday, while the number of Covid patients on Danish ICU wards is now 27, around one third of the number at the beginning of 2022.

“When we look to the future, the many infections mean that the baseline immunity which we have built up with vaccinations will be strengthened. That explains the fall in cases we are seeing at the current time,” SSI director Henrik Ullum said in the statement.

“Although we must expect that coronavirus will continue to mutate over time, the higher immunity will help us as a society so we are not hit as hard,” Ullum said.

READ ALSO: Denmark’s Covid-19 contact tracing service to release 90 percent of staff

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Covid-19: New Danish data indicate subsiding summer wave

A recent increase in the number of Covid-19 infections in Denmark appears to be declining, according to new data issued on Tuesday.

Covid-19: New Danish data indicate subsiding summer wave

The reproduction rate or R-number for the coronavirus is now estimated to be 0.8. A value less than 1.0 indicates a declining epidemic.

The last two weeks have seen the figure estimated at 1.1 and 1.0 as the new BA. 5 subvariant of the Omicron Covid variant became dominant in Denmark.

Health Minister Magnus Heunicke confirmed the updated number in a social media post and added that samples from sewage water also indicate the virus is now retreating.

“This fits with the picture we are seeing in other countries that have had a wave with BA. 5,” Heunicke wrote.

The observation of the trend in Denmark remains “uncertain” for the time being, he also noted.

University of Copenhagen Professor of Virology Allan Randrup Thomsen called the weekly number “very positive”.

“It seems as though [the subvariant growth] has stabilised,” Thomsen said.

“We’ve been unsure about how it was going with this summer wave and how high it will go,” he said.

People in Denmark can “generally relax and enjoy the summer,” he said.

“But I would still recommend those in vulnerable groups to accept the offer of an extra vaccine booster,” he added.