Normal everyday life with increased emergency preparedness

The Norwegian Government has decided that Norway will move to normal everyday life with increased emergency preparedness on Saturday 25 September at 4 pm.

Short version: "Now we can live as normal"

Even though most people's everyday lives will now return to normal, the pandemic is not over. People will continue to get sick, which is why it is important that everyone who has the chance of getting av vaccine, gets vaccinated. In addition, society will have increased preparedness and quickly be able to take action if the situation calls for it. The municipalities will have to respond immediately if outbreaks put the capacity of the health service under pressure’

Important advice and rules removed from September, 25th

Advice and rules that apply in a normal everyday life with increased preparedness

  • The most important rules that we all know well by now: 
    • Keep your hands clean
      Wash your hands thoroughly and often, particularly when around other people.
    • Use a paper tissue over your mouth and nose protects others when you cough or sneeze.
    • Use a flexed elbow when you cough or sneeze and do not have a tissue handy
    • Stay home if you have symptoms or fever.

  • If you have any respiratory symptoms, you should still get tested. The same also applies to people who are vaccinated.

  • If you are infected with COVID-19, you need to go into isolation in order not to transmit the virus to others. This is not a recommendation, but a rule that comes with a fine if you fail to comply.

  • Unvaccinated household members of an infected person should take a test and quarantine, regardless of whether they have symptoms or not. Other unvaccinated close contacts do not need to quarantine, but should take a test.

  • The traffic light model in schools and kindergartens will be kept for now as a tool which can be used when necessary.

Adjustments to the Government`s strategy

The new objective of the Norwegian Government's strategy is to prevent the pandemic from resulting in a considerable disease burden that puts a strain on the capacity of the municipalities and hospitals. At the same time, people should live as normally as possible.

The following four indicators will be applied when the authorities assess how large a disease burden we must be able to handle:

  • The number of patients in hospital
  • The number of patients in intensive care units
  • The age distribution of patients
  • Capacity in the municipalities

The COVID-19 infection rate will therefore play a smaller role in the future, while the overall burden, which includes the flu and RSV, will become more important.

More responsibility to the municipalities

The municipalities will have primary responsibility for implementing measures and adopting local regulations if the situation calls for it. 

The municipalities must have test- and vaccine preparedness going ahead, and be able to considerably increase this capacity if situation calls for it.

National rules and advice for normal everyday life with increased emergency preparedness

With the authorities' rules and advice generally being lifted, individuals may decide what risk they wish to take and what measures they will practice. The lifting of measures like national rules and advice does not prevent individuals from choosing a higher level of protection for themselves. For example, people who want greater protection from respiratory infections may choose to keep a distance from others and wear a face covering.

Actions, rules and advice

Hand hygiene

Wash your hands often. Use soap and water or alcohol-based hand products.

Cough or sneeze hygiene
  • A paper tissue over your mouth and nose protects others when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue away immediately. Then wash your hands.
  • Use a flexed elbow when you cough or sneeze and do not have a tissue handy.
Advice for respiratory symptoms

Advice for new respiratory symptoms (fever, cough, sore throat, loss of sense of smell or taste, decreased general condition):

  • Stay home.
  • Get tested for COVID-19. This primarily applies to young people and adults. Testing of children can be considered in consultation with their parents, for example if the child develops new symptoms after close contact with a confirmed case.

When to return to work, school, etc.:

  • Young people and adults should have a negative test result for COVID-19 before they return.
  • If the symptoms vanish completely after one day, they can return to work and school.
  • If symptoms persist, the person should stay home until their general condition is good, symptoms subside, and they have not had a fever for 24 hours without the use of fever relief medication. In most cases they should stay home for a couple of days.
  • If symptoms are more serious or persist, they should contact a doctor for an assessment.

If you have a negative COVID-19 test result, your symptoms are mild, and your general condition has not been affected, you do not need to stay home. Young people and adults can return to school/work when their health has improved or the same day that the test was taken if the reason for the test was mild or vague symptoms. You can return to work/school if you have residual symptoms like a runny nose or light cough.

There may be separate advice for health personnel and certain other professions.

Special rules for children in kindergarten and primary school:

Children who only have a runny or blocked nose or chronic respiratory symptoms do not need to stay home. Children with new symptoms, like a fever, cough, sore throat or decreased general condition, should stay home, but can go to kindergarten/school when their health improves. This applies even if the child still has some symptoms, such as a runny nose or light cough.

Testing

Testing is recommended for the following groups:

  • All people with new respiratory symptoms or other symptoms of COVID-19, regardless of their vaccination status.
  • Unvaccinated household members or corresponding close relations of an infected person.
  • Other unvaccinated close contacts.

Expanded regular testing will be phased out. Use of time-limited regular testing may be considered during outbreaks. In the event of a large outbreak, regular testing in accordance with the expert guidance of the Norwegian Institute of Public Health may be appropriate. Self-tests are the recommended test method for this purpose.

If you receive a positive result from a self-test, it is recommended that you take a PCR test to confirm the result.

Isolation in connection with infection

People who have a confirmed case of COVID-19 are required to isolate. This also applies to people who are vaccinated. Isolation means staying at home or at other suitable accommodation, isolated from others, also as far as possible from other people in the same household.

People who are in isolation at home can come out of isolation 5 days after the onset of symptoms and if they have not had a fever for over 24 hours without the use of fever relief medication.

If the person with a positive test result is not fully vaccinated, nor shows respiratory symptoms, they must count 5 days from the test date.

Testing is not recommended for fully-vaccinated people without respiratory symptoms. If they receive a positive test result despite this, they should remain in isolation for 2 days, in case they develop symptoms.

Contact tracing

The municipalities' routine contact tracing should only include household members and corresponding close relations, such as romantic partners.

If you are infected or the parent of an infected person, you should notify other close contacts and recommend that they get tested.

In health and care institutions and home-based services, contact tracing should be conducted in line with dedicated plans.

Advice for close contacts

Unvaccinated household members and corresponding close contacts of an infected person are advised to refrain from contact with others for 7 days or to take a test.

If you have no further exposure, you may get tested regularly instead of refraining from contact with others. The following methods may be used:

  1. Daily self-testing for 7 days
  2. PCR test every other day for 7 days

Vaccinated household members or corresponding close relations are advised not to refrain from contact with others, but to get tested if they develop symptoms.

People who are close contacts, but who are not household members or corresponding close relations, are recommended to:

  • Get tested as soon as they have been informed that they are a close contact.
  • Limit social contact until they have received a negative test result.
  • Closely assess their health with a view to identifying symptoms for 10 days after the close contact.
  • Not hesitate to take a new test if they develop symptoms.

The chief municipal medical officer may make assessments regarding the use of and recommendations regarding quarantine.

Face covering

When necessary, a local recommendation/order may be issued to use face coverings. Face coverings are an important infection control measure in the health service.


Publisert: 27.09.2021 10:06
Sist endret: 27.09.2021 10:18