Even Newborns at Quarantine Facilities

Gylfi Þór Þorsteinsson, director of quarantine facilities.

Gylfi Þór Þorsteinsson, director of quarantine facilities. mbl.is/Sigurður Bogi

Vala Hafstað

During the present wave of COVID-19, more children have had to stay at quarantine facilities in Iceland than before, even as young as a day old, Gylfi Þór Þorsteinsson, director of quarantine facilities, tells mbl.is .

“It’s a rule of thumb that ten percent of those who are diagnosed every day come to our facilities,” he states. “[W]e now have 160 guests. Many among them are children, and then there are between 10 and 15 uninfected parents, accompanying their infected children who need isolation.”

Reykjavík Lights Hotel was recently taken into use as a …

Reykjavík Lights Hotel was recently taken into use as a quarantine facility. mbl.is/Unnur Karen

Those parents do not necessarily become infected. “There are those who have become infected from accompanying others in isolation,” he explains, “but others have escaped [becoming infected]. Especially if they are vaccinated or have previously caught COVID-19. That increases their chance of escaping [an infection], although it isn’t a guarantee.”

The children range in age from a few weeks to teens. “Then there have been women from the maternity ward, who have brought their newborns,” Gylfi explains. “The youngest one who stayed here was a day old. They receive special attention.”

A total of 160 guests presently dwell at quarantine facilities …

A total of 160 guests presently dwell at quarantine facilities in Iceland. Photo/Red Cross

Gylfi states the guests are Icelandic as well as foreign, the foreign guests mainly ones who reside in Iceland. Some of the guests have ended up requiring hospitalization.

Based on the number of new cases in recent days, it wouldn’t surprise Gylfi if more quarantine facilities were needed this Christmas season, compared with December of last year. “We do at least assume there will be some guests here during Christmas and New Year,” he concludes.

Weather

Cloudy

Today

2 °C

Clear sky

Tomorrow

-2 °C

Rain

Saturday

4 °C