Sweden, the big winner ?: The overwhelming figures on the coronavirus

Sweden adopted a flexible strategy, which did not include a mandatory quarantine, to deal with the coronavirus pandemic Source: AFP

The strategy that Sweden adopted to combat the coronavirus has aroused vehement reactions for and against. When in March, unlike all other countries in Europe, stuck to its long-standing plan and refused to introduce a mandatory quarantine, immediately the eyes of the world turned to him “Swedish experiment”.

Authorities encouraged social distancing and recommended that the elderly and vulnerable protect themselves, but all schools for children under 16 remained open, as did restaurants and bars while events of up to 50 people continued.

Nor did it mandate the mandatory use of masks and very few people use it in supermarkets, buses and subways in Stockholm.

The reasoning given by the architect of the Swedish strategy, the state epidemiologist Anders Tegnell, was to consider public health in general, and only introduce measures that are sustainable in the long term.

State epidemiologist and architect of the Swedish strategy against the coronavirus pandemic, Anders Tegnell Source: AFP

At first, the daring strategy seemed to have failed. The infection quickly took hold of the Swedish capital, partly because of the large number of people who visited the Italian Alps in February; and many of the large nursing homes had outbreaks. Already at the end of April per capita deaths in Sweden dramatically exceeded those of neighboring Norway and Denmark, of which more than 70% occurred in nursing homes.

However, six months later, the Swedish bet begins to pay off; while other European countries predict a second wave of the pandemic. Although there was a clear excess mortality in April and May, Sweden’s death rates have returned to normal since June. In fact, since the end of August, daily deaths have not exceeded four and in the last week deaths were only reported one day, according to the site Our World in Data.

And although June saw an increase in the number of new cases, mainly among young people and mainly due to increased testing, it never translated into more hospitalizations or deaths. In fact, the total number of intensive care patients with Covid-19 in this country of 10 million people is currently 13.

Infections began to drop rapidly in July and even more so in August until the decisive moment was reached last week, as reported Evening Standard.

Today, Sweden is not only below the UK in new positive cases per capita, it has fallen below its Scandinavian neighbors, Denmark and Norway, advertised as “example nations” for their decisive action, but now suffering an acceleration of infections.

Sweden’s hopeful results have sparked a multiplicity of theories around the world. The population density is different, some say; the high number of individual households means the virus is not spreading, others say; They are culturally cold and don’t tend to get too close, says another popular theory. But the politically explosive possibility, which the Swedish health authorities defend, is that they are reaching a high degree of so-called “herd immunity” or “herd immunity”; In other words, that enough people have been infected and are now immune and therefore act as barriers against the spread of the virus, he explained. Evening Standard.

In an interview with the newspaper The Observer in London this month, Tegnell claimed that up to 30% of the country’s population could be immune.

If this is true, the political ramifications are difficult to estimate. It would mean that the lockdowns and face masks could be extending, rather than solving, the crisis, as the economic damage will be very difficult to bear in most regions of the world.

And although the Swedish GDP fell by 8% in the second quarter, the contraction was one of the least intense in Europe, if the numbers of the economies of Germany (-10.1%), Italy (-12.4%), France (13.8%) or Spain (-18.5%) are taken into account.

Sweden, the big winner ?: The overwhelming figures on the coronavirus – Source: Euro News


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