EU Members May Start Treating Covid-19 Like the Flu

January 13, 2022
EU members may start treating Covid-19 like the flu

Better days for travel are on the horizon – EU members may start treating Covid-19 like the flu.

Despite the rising number of Covid-19 cases across Europe, particularly Omicron variant cases, traveling may become easier and less stressful in the near future.

Omicron Cases Are Spiking in Europe, But It’s No Longer so Worrying

According to WHO data, France has registered almost two million new Covid-19 cases in the previous seven days (1,854,631), Italy has had 1,158,234, Spain 690,129, and Germany has detected 342,973 in the same period.

The new Covid-19 variant discovered in late November 2021 is more transmissible than existing Covid variants. Therefore, the WHO warned that the Omicron strain might infect half of Europe within the next two months.

However, the variant that appeared to be highly dangerous at first turned out to be a milder strain of the virus. People infected reported severe symptoms less often and were hospitalized less frequently than those infected with other Covid-19 variants.

As a result, many nations worldwide, including members of the European Union, are considering treating coronavirus like the flu. According to Bloomberg, Spain is the first country in the EU that recommend citizens to become accustomed to living with Covid-19. Spain urged the rest of the EU to treat the virus as an endemic disease.

Spain’s Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said in a radio interview on January 10th, “We have to evaluate the evolution of Covid from pandemic to an endemic illness.”

Other EU Countries May Soon Follow Suit

Like Spain, other EU members may start treating Covid-19 like the flu, too. A substantial number of Member States have lately eased travel restrictions, such as lowering quarantine periods despite the spread of Omicron.

Estonia, for example, has reduced its quarantine period from ten to seven days.

Likewise, Iceland has reduced the quarantine length to seven days. Previously, people who got the virus were required to quarantine for ten days. The decision was made following the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announcement that the quarantine period for US citizens would be reduced to five days.

And travelers can now end quarantine in Slovenia on the fifth day if they present a negative Covid-19 test. Before January 10th, the test could only be taken on the seventh day.

While reducing the quarantine length, EU countries have also shortened the validity of vaccination certificates to encourage more people to receive booster shots. The effectiveness of “full immunization” after two doses has turned out to weaken over time.

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