From Iceland — Chief Epidemiologist: Not "Scare Tactics" To Point Out Pandemic Isn't Over

Chief Epidemiologist: Not “Scare Tactics” To Point Out Pandemic Isn’t Over

Published October 25, 2021

Andie Sophia Fontaine
Photo by

In response to recent remarks from a conservative Reykjavík city councilperson, RÚV reports, chief epidemiologist Þórólfur Guðnason says that it is not at all “scare tactics” to point out the fact that the coronavirus pandemic is still very much ongoing.

Hildur Björnsdóttir, who represents the Independence Party in Reykjavík City Council, took to Facebook less than two weeks ago to remark that in her opinion, the time has long come to lift domestic pandemic restrictions so that life can go back to normal, adding, “Haven’t we had enough of these baseless scare tactics?”

Be in with the chance of winning a box of Icelandic candy—and a piece of Geldingadalsgos lava—by signing up for our newsletter here before 1500 Icelandic time on Friday 29th October.

The remarks are especially striking now, as mask restrictions were lifted barely a week ago and we have already seen a significant upswing in domestic cases.

Speaking at a conference of first responders last week, Þórólfur said in part, “COVID is not over. It can still wreak havoc on us if we don’t take precautions. And these are not scare tactics.”

Þórólfur pointed out that about a month ago, all domestic restrictions were lifted in Denmark. “At that time, they were diagnosing about 300 people per day [with coronavirus infection]. Then that shot up to 600 to 700 per day, and over the past two days it has reached 1,300 per day. So what happens now? Is it coming back to bite the Danes? I hope not, but it could happen.”

As it stands now, all domestic restrictions are due to be lifted in Iceland in three weeks’ time, but that depends entirely on how domestic cases go. As such, even with the mask requirements and social gathering restrictions lifted, the general public is still being encouraged to exercise common hygienic practices in the fight against the coronavirus.

Support The Reykjavík Grapevine!
Buy subscriptions, t-shirts and more from our shop right here!

Show Me More!