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First non-quarantined COVID case in a month

01.03.2021 - 13:18
Mynd með færslu
 Mynd: Almannavarnir
One new COVID-19 case was diagnosed in Iceland yesterday and the affected individual was not already in quarantine. The chief epidemiologist says it appears to be a domestic transmission and, if so, is the first since 1st February, and the 20th January before that.

The results of antibody testing are awaited. The affected individual has recently returned to Iceland and tested negative both at the airport and in the second test five days later. Several days after this second homecoming test, the individual went for yet another test as they were planning to travel overseas again. This test came back positive. It is possible the infection is old and no longer contagious. That will be confirmed later today when the antibody test results are known. 

The virus is still somewhere out there 

“It is pretty likely, I feel, that this is a domestic transmission, and that says quite simply that the virus is somewhere out there. We just need to go and trace it and better establish where it came from,” chief epidemiologist Þórólfur Guðnason said this morning—adding that the case does not call for harder restrictions at this time and that each individual’s behaviour is still the most important defence. “But if we start to see any more spread, everything will naturally need to be re-examined.” 

State police civil protection chief Víðir Reynisson agrees, saying it was always expected that cases would continue to arise here and there. He says it is certainly interesting in this case that the affected individual had recently received two negative test results—adding that it is not yet appropriate to draw conclusions before antibody test results are known. “We have said all along that we are not virus-free and that we can expect individuals to be diagnosed outside of quarantine.” 

Two people were diagnosed in border testing yesterday and it is not yet confirmed whether the cases were active or old. 

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