Comprehensive measures to limit transmission of the coronavirus

The Norwegian Directorate of Health has implemented comprehensive measures to limit the transmission of the coronavirus and to contribute to the maintenance of necessary health and care services.

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On March 24th, the government informed about stricter recommendations and that the comprehensive measures will initially last until April 13th, 2020. The measures may be extended.

Stricter recommendations on keeping your distance

You should take care not to exceed 5 people in the same group. You should also stay at least 2 metres (7 feet) away from other people, whether they are strangers or in the same group as you. This does not apply to people who normally live together.

Where a distance of 2 metres is difficult to ensure, such as in shops and pharmacies that need to be kept open, you should stay at least 1 metre from other people.

The reason for these precautions is that the risk of infection increases with the amount of time spent in another's company, and the closer the contact is.

Closing and ban

The Norwegian Directorate of Health has issued a ban on and closing of:

  • Cultural events
  • Sports events and organised sports activities, both indoors and outdoors
  • All establishments in the hospitality industry, except for eating places where food is distributed, i.e. canteens and eating places that can ensure visitors to keep at least 1 metre distance from each other. Buffets are not allowed. The hospitality industry includes restaurants, bars, pubs and nightclubs.
  • Gyms
  • Companies that provide hairdressing services, skin care, massage and body care, tattooing, piercing, etc.
  • Swimming pools, water parks, etc.
  • Physiotherapists and manual therapists, chiropractors, opticians, chiropodists, speech therapists, psychologists, companies performing complementary and alternative medicine and alternative treatment (changed 16.03.2020)
  • Other service providers outside the specialist health service that offer services that are not considered necessary health care, where the service involves physical contact with persons less than two meters away and with a duration of more than 15 minutes (changed 16.03.2020).

There are a few exceptions to the list above that apply to, among others, psychologists, as well as opticians and others who sell goods. For more information, see Vedtak om å stenge ytterligere virksomheter (helsedirektoratet.no) (in Norwegian).

Retail and groceries

Retail trade will remain open. There is no need to stock up on food. Grocery stores will stay open.

Ban on travels abroad for healthcare professionals who work with patient treatment

The Norwegian Directorate of Health has under the Health Emergency Act issued a ban prohibiting abroad travels for healthcare professionals working with patient treatment. The ban applies to both business travel and leisure travel. Costs will be compensated for. The Norwegian Directorate of Health will advise healthcare professionals on this. The decision is effective from March 12th through April 2020.

Travel

Domestic travel

You should avoid journeys that are not strictly necessary (both domestic and international), avoid public transport if you can, and other places where you easily can get into close contact with others.

On March 20th the government introduced a ban on overnight stays in holiday properties outside your own municipality. More information on the ban is found at the government's website regjeringen.no (in Norwegian).

The ban does not apply for people who normally live with a member of the household who is in isolation due to having been confirmed infected by coronavirus.

Thus, people who are quarantined because they normally live with a person who is confirmed as infected, may stay at their cabin or other holiday property for as long as the infected person is in isolation at home. The infected person must stay at home, while the rest of the household may stay at the cabin.

Travel abroad

It is advised against non-essential travel to all countries. Anyone who has travelled abroad should be in quarantine upon their arrival in Norway.

Public transport and working from home

The health authorities recommend using home office if possible. Public transport will continue so that people with critical society functions can get to and from work and be able to close contact with each other.