Other infectious diseases fell by 70 percent during the pandemic

SickSick.Photo: Terje Bendiksby / SCANPIX .

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The number of recorded cases of other infectious diseases has plummeted after the most stringent Coronavirus measures were introduced in March.

On March 12, the authorities introduced the most radical measures in peacetime Norway to limit the spread of the Coronavirus.

In the following weeks, the number of other infectious diseases decreased as reported by the doctors and laboratories on the MSIS registry. It shows a study conducted by four researchers at the Institute of Public Health that was published in the Journal of the Norwegian Medical Association this week.

In week 12, which began on March 16, physicians and laboratories reported 47 percent fewer cases of infectious disease compared to the median from 2017–2019. Then there were 50 per cent fewer cases in week 13 and 69 per cent fewer cases in week 14.

The researchers believe that there may be  several reasons for this decrease. These include people having less social contact with each other, that restaurants being closed, more focus on hand hygiene, travel restrictions and higher awareness of infection prevention measures in health professionals. They also point out that many people with mild symptoms may have failed to seek medical attention to avoid coronavirus infection.

At the same time, the researchers emphasize that the findings may also be because many in the health care system have focused on dealing with the pandemic.

“We cannot distinguish to what extent the reduction of various notifiable diseases is the result of competing priorities and increased pressure on public health personnel and laboratories, or that there is real reduction in the spread and prevalence of infectious diseases,”
they added in the article.

© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today

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