While the State Serum Institute, Denmark’s infectious disease agency, has determined it isn’t worth testing travelers from China for Covid-19 upon arrival in Denmark, the Epidemic Commission is urging airlines to take special precautions on flights from China.
As per the government advisory group’s recommendations, Minister of Interior and Health Sophie Løhde has asked (but not required) the aviation industry to request negative tests from travellers from China before boarding planes as well as implement mask requirements.
The Epidemic Commission has also suggested offering travellers from China free antigen tests upon arrival, as well as voluntary PCR-based spot testing for Covid and testing for the virus in waste water from aircraft.
Covid-19 infection rates in China are currently high after it abolished its ‘zero Covid’ policy in late 2022, although no precise numbers are available.
In an assessment by the State Serum Institute (SSI) published late last week, it was noted that there aren’t expected to be a large number of arrivals coming directly from China and that any tests would have a marginal effect on Danish epidemic control.
However, SSI wrote that it was still important to keep an eye on new variants of Covid-19 and suggested that a sample of voluntary-based PCR tests could be introduced for travellers from China.
“The government will follow the recommendations from SSI and the Epidemic Commission and at a meeting tomorrow with the [parliamentary] epidemic committee I will give the parliamentary parties a status update,” Løhde said.
The Epidemic Commission, an expert advisory group to the government, is distinct from parliament’s epidemic committee (Epidemiudvalget), which is concerned with oversight and on which MPs from all parliamentary parties are represented.
The interior and health ministries are in talks with authorities and airlines as to how the recommendations might be implanted.
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