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Iceland almost recovered from coronavirus

Christian Fernsby ▼ | May 7, 2020
Iceland has all but eliminated the coronavirus outbreak as 97 per cent of infected patients have recovered and only two new cases have been confirmed in the last week, the government says.
Iceland street
Recovery   Iceland street
After declaring its first confirmed cases in early March, the north Atlantic island went into a lockdown, closing schools and banning large public gatherings, and it put in place a rigorous testing and tracing strategy to curb the outbreak.

Topics: Iceland coronavirus

That enabled the country of about 360,000 people to announce a partial re-opening of society in mid-April after the outbreak peaked earlier in the month and showed clear signs of slowing.

"We have been pleasantly surprised to see a very fast deceleration of the pandemic in Iceland. However, it is extremely important to remain vigilant and minimise the risk of a renewed outbreak," chief epidemiologist Thorolfur Gudnason said in a statement.

Iceland has performed tests on 51,663 inhabitants, or more than 14 per cent of people overall - a great proportion than in almost any other country, thanks in part to its small population.

Most restrictions were eased on Monday, with the opening of schools, hair salons and museums, and gatherings of up to 50 people now allowed.

The government said "57 per cent of those who have tested positive for COVID-19 were already isolated in quarantine when they were diagnosed, which is believed to underline the effectiveness of those measures in combating the spread of the virus".