Your Danish Post

First case of COVID-19 confirmed in the Copenhagen area

Avoiding panic and ensuring enough information is available to the Danes and medical staff is at the top of the Danish health authorities’ priority list with the confirmation of one case of coronavirus in Denmark.

The article continues below.

By Bente D. Knudsen

It was expected to happen, with the spread to Italy at a time when Danes like to go skiing in the Italian Alpes, Danish health authorities had prepared for the risk of spread to Denmark, which is exactly what happened when Denmark woke up this morning to the news that one person was diagnosed with COVID-19.

The person is Danish, had been travelling to Italy to ski with his family and came home on Monday, went back to work at TV2 News on Wednesday 26 February and as he felt ill that day, he was tested in an isolated unit at Sjællands Universitetshospital in Roskilde.

This morning Denmark woke up to the news that he had been tested positive. His wife and children were however tested negative. The family have agreed to the information being posted in Danish news.

The article continues below.

On his Facebook post, Jakob Tage Ramlyng writes that the family is really shaken by the news, as what seemed impossible suddenly was reality.

The family is at home in quarantine and he is being monitored several times a day by Danish medical personnel. He is feeling ill, but with regular flu symptoms.

The Danish board for patient safety, Styrelsen for Patientsikkerhed, is in close dialog with the family in order to identify whom they have been in contact with since they came home. The board is the unit responsible for taking contact to these people in line with the guidelines issued of containing spread.

During a visit today at the workplace of the patient, TV2 News, in Sydhavnen in Copenhagen a risk assessment of the employees he has been in contact with was made resulting in the placement of fifteen employees in 14 days home quarantine.

Søren Brostrøm, CEO at the Danish health board, Sundhedstyrelsen, says to DR that he expects more cases of coronavirus will be seen in Denmark in the weeks to come.

The article continues below.

The Danish health authorities are stressing that people who have been in an area of risk and who present symptoms such as fever, coughing, trouble swallowing or breathing, or other flu like symptoms do NOT go to the waiting room of their GP or the emergency room of a hospital but instead contact their GP or the out of hours emergency number of their area, in Copenhagen this is the 1813.

Here they will be asked a multitude of questions to asses if they are at risk of having the coronavirus, notably if they have been travelling within the last two weeks to countries with large outbreaks of the coronavirus such as the northern regions of Italy, China, South Korea, Singapore, Hong Kong, Iran or Japan.

If they are assessed at having been at risk of COVID-19 they will be guided as to the next steps that will be taken in order to test them while ensuring minimal risk of spread to others.

In Denmark, testing facilities have been set up that can test within four hours 24/7 for the coronavirus.


How to avoid panic? more information below.

The authorities are doing everything to contain spread by identifying those at risk of being infected with the COVID-19 virus, however, simple hygiene measures are still considered the best protective measure, which is extensive hand washing or using a hand disinfectant, avoiding close contact with anyone coughing or sneezing.

Kåre Mølbak from the Danish health board, Sundhedstyrelsen, stressed said this morning at a press meeting that COVID-19 is NOT an airborne virus such as the measles or whopping cough, which are extremely contagious.

Instead COVID-19 is transmitted through droplets from people coughing or sneezing in your face and thus requires close contact between people to transmit.

Touching a surface that was been contaminated with COVID-19 by the droplets from someone who is ill, will only result in contagion if you then subsequently touch your mouth, nose or eye.

The best advice from health experts world wide to avoid risk is still to step up on hygiene measures, wash your hands often, always when you have touched a surface such as a doorknob or other items in a public space, if you cannot wash your hands, use a disinfectant. Do not touch your mouth, nose or eyes if you were not able to wash or disinfect your hands. Avoid close contact with people who cough or sneeze or show other flu like symptoms

The article continues below.