Health

Faroese government reinforces anti-Covid measures amid fears of new variant

Image credits: Maria Olsen

The government of the Faroe Islands announced a series of new recommendations with regard to combating Covid-19, in effect extending official recommendations from the holiday season for ten more days, including, for example, that bars and restaurants close at 10pm.

The announcement came following reports of a new variant of Covid-19 originating in the United Kingdom, spreading to Denmark and other neighboring countries.

Below we quote the full statement issued by the government.

New recommendations in effect from 7 January 2021.

Travel:

  • All unnecessary travel to other countries is discouraged.
  • All visitors should take particular care in the days prior to their departure to the Faroe Islands. Most people will be traveling from countries where there are currently high infection rates, which means they should take extra precautions. Careful conduct at this time is crucial.
  • All visitors should be tested for COVID-19 three days prior to departure.
  • All visitors should self-isolate until they have received the result of the follow-up test that they are advised to take 6 days after arrival. Self-isolation means that you do not go to work. You should not have any visitors during this time, and you should not go shopping or do other errands. You may go for a drive in your own car and take a walk outdoors, but only where you do not come into contact with other people. You should have no direct contact with anyone considered to be in a vulnerable group.

Updated domestic measures:

  • Visitors from abroad should under no circumstances visit family or friends at hospitals, care homes or residences for the elderly until they have received a negative result from the COVID-19 test 6 days after arrival
  • Restaurants and bars will close at 10 pm until Sunday 17 January.
  • Schools and daycare centres are advised not to hold larger events to which people from outside the institution are usually invited. This includes events which would normally be attended by parents and other family members.
  • Shopping: Special emphasis should be placed on social distancing hand and hygiene and. It is advisable that only one person in the household does the shopping, rather than going several together. It is also advisable to go shopping when there are fewer people.  Face masks are recommended when a lot of people are in a shop. If you have come to the Faroe Islands from abroad, you should not go shopping at all until you have received a negative result from the test that you should take 6 days after arrival.
  • Retailers: Businesses should ensure that hand sanitizer is readily available and that stores are kept clean. Signs should be clearly displayed to help customers keep to the recommendations. Staff should use protective gear where necessary. Retailers can help by making face masks available for customers. If retailers cannot limit the number of customers so that the recommended distances can be maintained, then both customers and staff are advised to wear face masks.
  • Sports: All indoor sporting events should be held without spectators. This applies to both adult and children’s competitions. Coaches and assistants can be present during matches.
  • Festivals, sports events, and other large gatherings should be postponed or cancelled.
  • The total number of people gathering for events should not exceed 100, and this only when a physical distance of 2 metres between people can be maintained.

Guidelines for limiting social interaction:

  • Remember to maintain a physical distance from others. The current recommendation is 2 metres (6 feet) in public spaces and wherever possible
  • Limit the number of people that you are in contact with. Try to limit your contacts to those that you already spend time with regularly.
  • Avoid unorganised gatherings in groups of more than 20 people.
  • Maintain rigorous hand hygiene, washing your hands thoroughly and often. Use sanitizer if you do not have access to soap and water.
  • Cough or sneeze into your arm – not your hands.
  • Avoid physical greetings such as handshaking, hugging and kissing.
  • Maintain strict hygiene both at home and at work.
  • Take particular care in places where many people are around. 
  • Remember that anyone can carry the infection and pass it on to others, even if you have no symptoms yourself.
  • Pay attention to any symptoms of illness that could indicate a corona infection, such as fever and coughing, and stay at home if in any doubt.

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