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Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Monday

A possible housing law change for Ukrainian refugees, a hospital giving chairs to A&E patients and declining local concerns over buried minks are among the main news stories in Denmark on Monday.

Pandas at Copenhagen Zoo on April 24th. Photo: Philip Davali/Ritzau Scanpix

Minister to table amendment to Ukrainian refugee law 

Minister for Immigration and Integration Mattias Tesfaye will today table a proposed change to the special law passed last month for refugees from Ukraine. The law simplifies the application process for Ukrainian refugees seeking work and residence permits in Denmark after fleeing the Russian invasion of their country.

READ ALSO: Ukrainian refugees can work in Denmark before receiving residence permit

The government is to propose a change to the law that will allow Ukrainians granted residence to live in underprivileged areas formerly termed “ghettos” by the Danish government. Housing laws restrict the number of refugees who may live in such areas.

The immigration ministry yesterday said it had a majority backing for a change to the law, with conservative parties as well as the closely-aligned Socialist People’s Party (SF) in support of the government plan.

READ ALSO: Ukrainians in Denmark could soon move into underprivileged housing areas

Hospital gives Accident & Emergency patients chairs instead of beds

The Accident & Emergency department (Akutafdeling) at the regional hospital in Randers has introduced a new system in which patients are given a chair rather than a bed on arrival, broadcaster DR writes.

The use of chairs is part of a ‘fast track’ system to reduce the amount of time patients spend in the hospital and relieve strain on busy staff, according to the report.

“When you are given a chair with us, you aren’t necessarily given hospital clothing and many of our patients therefore feel less sickly,” a nurse a the department who helped develop the scheme, Andreas Sand Nørgaard, said to DR.

“There are some work procedures we have improved. We don’t need to clean as much, we don’t need to move beds around and the patients have a better experience,” he added.

The Danish Society for Patient Safety (Dansk Selskab for Patientsikkerhed) approves of the system and would like to see other hospitals trial it according to DR.

Fewer local residents concerned about mink mass graves

Neighbours of areas in West Jutland appear to be increasingly unconcerned about pollution from nearby locations which were used to bury thousands of minks which were culled in late 2020 due to concerns about Covid-19 mutations.

READ ALSO: Denmark to exhume millions of minks culled over virus

Just 20 residents signed up for town halls over the issue for neighbours of the Nørre Felding and Kølvrå sites, DR reports.

The low number of attendees reflects declining concerns that the buried mink can pollute local areas affecting things like drinking water, a local residents’’ representative told DR.

Weather: Dry and sunny start to week

 Forecasts from last week suggested that today would begin with rain, but that now seems unlikely following a somewhat grey and drizzly Sunday.

The weather this week is expected to continue to benefit from a high pressure front over Scandinavia which is giving is blue skies and low precipitation.

Temperatures will be a little lower than last week at 10-14 degrees Celsius, but it will be sunny and dry with a mild northerly wind.

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For members


Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

Murder at a luxury Copenhagen hotel, changes to laws on Ukrainian refugees, and new Covid surveillance strategies are among the top news stories in Denmark this Thursday.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

Danish government wants to make Ukrainian refugee “start date” more flexible 

As the law currently stands, Ukrainians who happened to have left their home country — perhaps for vacation or business — just before war broke out could have trouble gaining residence in Denmark. 

The Danish government have announced plans to change the ‘cut-off date’ for when people must have left Ukraine to be considered war refugees from February 24th to February 1st. 

Parliament will consider the amendment to the current “Ukrainian law,” which grants two years’ residence to refugees who meet certain stipulations, including when they fled the country. 

READ ALSO: Denmark plans ‘Ukraine towns’ to accommodate war refugees 

Without widespread testing, how will Denmark predict next Covid wave? 

With Denmark’s once-wide network of public Covid test sites nearly gone, the State Serum Institute — Denmark’s infectious disease agency — is piloting a new program that it hopes will detect upticks in infections.

Ten thousand blood donors and the members of their households will be randomly chosen to participate in the “PCR Home Test Study,” the SSI says. Those who agree to participate will receive test kits from the government and will be asked to self-test once a week for a month, registering each sample in TestCenter Denmark’s app and sending it to the SSI for processing. 

If a new wave is detected, the SSI will consider recommending boosters for groups at high risk, director Henrik Ullum told Danish newswire Ritzau. 

If the program is successful, it could be deployed to monitor other respiratory viruses, such as the flu, Ullum added. 

READ ALSO: Which Covid self-tests should you buy (and avoid) in Denmark? 

Danish man pleads guilty to bow and arrow attack in Norway 

Espen Andersen Brathen the 38-year-old Danish man accused of using a bow and arrow outside a supermarket and stabbing five to death with a knife in the Norwegian town of Kongsberg last October, pleaded guilty to all charges yesterday. 

Although the attack was initially thought to be an act of terrorism, three experts who observed him assessed that Brathen was experiencing paranoid schizophrenia, newswire Agence France-Presse reports. Both the prosecution and defense agree that a psychiatric commitment, rather than a prison sentence, is appropriate. 

Murder at luxury Copenhagen hotel 

The NH Collection on Strandgade — home to the “Feel Safe at NH” campaign during the Covid pandemic — was the site of what authorities describe as a brutal murder on Sunday.  

A 28-year-old man suffered head injuries in a room in the NH Collection, where rooms start at 3000 kroner a night, and died of his injuries Monday evening. Police have one man, a 20-year-old, in custody for the crime and are seeking a 24-year-old Dutch citizen as an alleged accomplice. 

Authorities also suspect the 20-year-old currently in custody in another crime three hours after the incident on Strandgade — a gruesome knife attack at an “apartment hotel” in Silkegade. According to charges read at a preliminary hearing in court yesterday, the second victim was stabbed repeatedly, his cheek was ripped open, and an ear was cut off.