The Baltic nation is suffering the highest COVID-19 death rate in Europe, raising pressure on the government to abandon its ‘no lockdown’ approach.
Sweden’s Social Democrat prime minister, Stefan Lovren, said that the country’s strategy of minimal lockdown where schools, restaurants and businesses have stayed open throughout the pandemic “will bear fruit in the long run.”
However, figures show that with only a population of 10 million there have been 3,831 deaths and rising meaning the country has the highest death rate per capita in Europe.
Whilst the rest of Europe locked-down straightaway the country didn’t and it has come back to haunt them, especially as other countries spikes in death seem to be decreasing.
This in Sweden was encouraged by Chief Epidemiologist Anders Tegnell, whose recommendation was voluntary measures against corona, rather than a mandatory lockdown like those imposed by many other countries across the world.
This had divided opinion at home and abroad even though at first their strategy seemed to be working with many people questioning their own nation’s lockdowns.
Sweden’s strategy of keeping most schools, restaurants, bars and businesses open even as much of Europe hunkered down behind closed doors exposed it to criticism with death rates running far higher than in it’s Nordic neighbours, even if much lower than in countries such as Britain, Italy and France that shut down.
The UK, Belgium and the US, have 5.57, 4.28 and 4.11 deaths per 1 million people whilst Sweden has 6.08 deaths per million.