News story | Date: 29/04/2021
The Norwegian Government is introducing a requirement that people who have visited countries outside the EEA and the Schengen area and have received a positive result from a rapid antigen test taken at the border must also take a PCR test at the border. It is also introducing a requirement that all people staying at a quarantine hotel take a PCR test on day 7 after arrival. The municipalities will be under an obligation to offer such a test.
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These changes are based on recommendations from the Norwegian Directorate of Health and the Norwegian Institute of Public Health.
"Norway has one of the strictest systems in Europe for preventing imported cases of COVID-19. We are now introducing even stricter rules regarding testing. We are doing this to limit the spread of the mutated and more contagious variants of the virus", says Minister of Health and Care Services Bent Høie.
People who, during the 10 days prior to arrival, have visited an area that triggers a duty to quarantine must take a test at the border crossing point upon arrival in Norway. The test must be a rapid antigen test.
A requirement is now being introduced that people who have been outside the EEA and the Schengen area and who receive a positive rapid test result must also take a PCR test at the border. Previously, the PCR test could be taken within 24 hours of arrival.
The Norwegian Directorate of Health and the Norwegian Institute of Public Health consider this measure to be necessary in order to limit imported cases of COVID-19 and reveal new virus mutations.
At present, all people in quarantine following arrival from another country who are not staying at a quarantine hotel are required to take a test on day 7. The rules are now being changed so that they also apply to people staying at a quarantine hotel. The municipalities will be under an obligation to offer such a test to these people.
The changes will enter into effect on Thursday 29 April at 12 am.
A requirement that all travellers arriving from Bangladesh, India, Iraq, Nepal, and Pakistan must stay at a quarantine hotel has also been introduced, and there are very few exemptions from this rule. This means that people who have undertaken necessary travel to these countries will also be required to stay at a quarantine hotel.
The stricter entry restrictions that apply to travellers arriving from the countries in question will enter into effect on Wednesday 28 April at 12 pm. Any person who has visited these countries during the 10 days prior to arrival in Norway must stay at a quarantine hotel.
For more information about the quarantine hotel requirements for this group of travellers, see information on stricter entry restrictions.