Download the ABC News app and subscribe to our range of news alerts for the latest on how the pandemic is impacting the world, The dark side to Sweden's divisive coronavirus strategy, Charting the pandemic: Latest data on the NSW and Victoria outbreaks, Victorians flee NSW ahead of border closure, leaving tourism operators in tears, Sydney may have 'missed the boat' for effective lockdown, expert says, What border restrictions are in place in each state and territory for NSW and Victorian travellers. "The reproductive rate of the infection declined drastically as a result of these non-compulsory measures," he said. Public Health Agency of Sweden; The latest coronavirus news from Reuters. Sweden’s days as a European outlier in the fight against coronavirus may be ending. Centrist elected leader of Merkel's CDU party, Why California is struggling to contain Covid, The other virus that has scientists worried, .css-1snjdh1-IconContainer{display:none;height:0.875em;width:0.875em;vertical-align:-0.0625em;margin-right:0.25em;}Four-year-old's viral dinosaur song made into book. Andersson also warned that they also expected unemployment to increase up to 9% during the year. Sweden Stayed Open And More People Died Of Covid-19, But The Real Reason May Be Something Darker Eric Mack Contributor Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own. The Swedish Government has ordered an inquiry into what went wrong in aged care homes, where thousands died after being exposed to COVID-19. Video, The surveillance of Martin Luther King Jr. Video, The surveillance of Martin Luther King Jr, Final execution of Trump presidency is carried out, Tennis stars' arrival angers stranded Australians, Signal messaging service goes down amid user surge, Nasa's 'megarocket' set to fire up engines, 'Like a medieval battle': The riots frontline, US expects 'rapid growth' of virus variant, The European Union saw a contraction of 11.9%. Sweden's death rate is among the worst in the world, although it remains lower than some European countries which had imposed much harsher measures, including Italy, Britain and Spain. Professor Andreas Ortmann, an expert on experimental and behavioural economics at the University of New South Wales, said it's far too early to tell if the Swedes' strategy was a success or a dangerous gamble. AEST = Australian Eastern Standard Time which is 10 hours ahead of GMT (Greenwich Mean Time), Government to schedule 20 repatriation flights to bring stranded Australians home, 47 Australian Open players forced into quarantine after COVID-19 case detected on flight, Mother wakes from coma to find baby was stillborn after being given 10 times prescribed morphine dose. Its economy shrank by 8.6 per cent in the April-to-June quarter — the worst performance in decades. Sweden's Covid expert warns UK: opening and closing schools would be disastrous. The Government’s work in response to the virus responsible for COVID-19 Picture: The Government Offices of Sweden. In a forecast by the Swedish National Institute of Economic Researchpublished in late April, the Swedish GDP was expected to fall with 7% du… Sweden's coronavirus suppression strategy was an experiment that few other nations dared champion. State infectious disease specialist says changing the rules harms public trust. Given the obvious hardship, misery, and death lockdowns bring, Sweden’s leaders decided it made more sense to just isolate the sick and elderly. There is an ongoing outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), which causes the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). But the government did hope that keeping more of society open would help limit job losses and mitigate the effect on businesses. "This coronavirus is an impressive adversary, one that we should never underestimate at all.". "Particularly if there isn't herd immunity, which I don't think there will be.". In contrast, Norway, with about half the population of Sweden, has had 267 deaths from covid-19, with 90% in people over the age of 70. "The downturn in GDP is the largest for a single quarter for the period of 1980 and forward," Statistics Sweden said. The flash estimate from the Swedish statistics office indicated that the country had fared better than other EU nations which took stricter measures. "We've had a rather open society, based on recommendations," Professor Dillner said. A paper published by the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine found about 15-20 per cent of the population in the capital had developed antibodies. Sweden Coronavirus(COVID-19) statistics. Brightly coloured beach towels line the shores of Lake Storsjon, two hours north of Stockholm. The Swedish Government did put some restrictions in place. .css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:link{color:inherit;}.css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:visited{color:#696969;}.css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:link,.css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:visited{-webkit-text-decoration:none;text-decoration:none;}.css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:link:hover,.css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:visited:hover,.css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:link:focus,.css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:visited:focus{color:#B80000;-webkit-text-decoration:underline;text-decoration:underline;}.css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:link::after,.css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:visited::after{content:'';position:absolute;top:0;right:0;bottom:0;left:0;z-index:2;}Eurozone suffers deepest contraction on record. Sweden COVID-19 Death Rate Lower Than Spain, Italy and U.K. By Soo Kim On 8/3/20 at 7:16 AM EDT. In case you hadn’t heard, Sweden is one of the very few western nations that didn’t respond to COVID-19 by imposing any lockdowns. The country's approach has been more liberal than the lockdowns imposed in neighbouring countries or, indeed, around the world. "The public health authority is quite popular, even now. Where Sweden COVID-19 data comes from. Yet life in Sweden has still changed for many of its 10 million citizens, prompting immunologists to suggest its strategy can't be seen as relaxed, just less stringent. About COVID-19 data in Sweden. Sweden, which avoided a lockdown during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, saw its economy shrink 8.6% in the April-to-June period from the previous three months. In the last month, Sweden has reported a 30 percent increase in the number of confirmed cases, which jumped from 5,726 to 7,441 and about 2,000 more deaths, according to data collected by Our World in Data. During the pandemic, Sweden has been the pariah in Scandinavia. Now, some studies suggest that never materialised. Professor Dillner said many infectious diseases experts are cautiously waiting to see whether Sweden will be properly prepared for a second wave of infections in the European autumn and winter. Prioritised testing of people who are sick, and not widespread screening of healthcare workers, was a mistake in his view. Sweden’s Covid-19 strategy, adopted in March, emerged from the country’s top epidemiologist and other leaders’ evaluation of what little science about … Recent opinion polls have suggested declining confidence in the minority government's handling of the pandemic. Total and daily confirmed cases and deaths. Sweden As the COVID-19 pandemic worsened in countries across the globe, most governments took the precaution of closing their schools in an attempt to contain the spread of the virus. Sweden Coronavirus update with statistics and graphs: total and new cases, deaths per day, mortality and recovery rates, current active cases, recoveries, trends and timeline. On this site I try to present current data on Covid-19 that is interesting from a Swedish perspective, using charts that provide context and gives us an idea about what the current situation actually looks like. But alongside other Nordic nations, it hasn't been nearly as hard-hit as larger European economies. Instead, Professor Ortmann said a longer-term assessment would need to take into account the rate of underemployment, business confidence and the mental health of Sweden's citizens. "We feel that when the WHO said 'test, test and test again' — we should have done that.". Catch up on the main COVID-19 news from January 16 with our coronavirus blog. But Professor Dillner believes there is a "significant spread" in some populations in Stockholm, suggesting his research found about 8-31 per cent of healthcare workers in Stockholm had tested positive in antibody tests. ... As of August 12, the latest death rate in Sweden … The emails, obtained by Swedish journalists under freedom of information laws, showed that in March, Anders Tegnell appeared to ask whether a higher death rate among older people might be acceptable if it led to faster herd immunity. Coronavirus – latest updates. (12) Sweden elderly care workers may have done more cross-facility work; (13) Sweden might have larger nursing homes; (14) Stockholmers might travel more to the Alpine regions; (15) Sweden might be quicker to count a death "a COVID death.” We give evidence for these other 15 possible factors. India begins world's biggest Covid vaccine drive. Individual nations did even worse, with Spain seeing an 18.5% contraction, while the French and Italian economies shrank by 13.8% and 12.4% respectively. Although businesses have largely continued to operate in Sweden, the country's economy is highly dependent on exports, which were hit by lack of demand from abroad. Large gatherings were banned and Swedes were asked to avoid non-essential travel, work from home, and to isolate if they were unwell. STOCKHOLM, Aug. 9, 2020 -- People enjoy themselves at a lakeside beach in Stockholm, capital of ...[+] Sweden, on Aug. 9, 2020. For latest updates on the bushfires impacting suburbs south of Perth, search on ABC Emergency or find your local ABC Radio station. Sweden defies ‘experts’, rejects lockdown and keeps COVID-19 numbers in check. Sweden has about 8200 confirmed cases per million people as of 12 August, compared with 1780 in Norway and 2560 in Denmark. "It is, as expected, a dramatic downturn. Various forecasts predict the Swedish economy will still shrink by about 5% this year. Why did Emirates suspend flights and how will this impact Australians stuck overseas? Its approach was starkly different from the suppression strategies adopted in Norway, Denmark and Finland. The results also suggest that, while more of society remained open than in other parts of Europe, plenty of Swedes still chose to stay away from shops, restaurants and gyms. This … As for the short-term, Dr Tegnell recently said that rapid testing and contact tracing will be key to the second stage of Sweden's attempt to weather the pandemic. However, it was still the largest quarterly fall for at least 40 years. Eurozone suffers deepest contraction on record, Four-year-old's viral dinosaur song made into book. "This is the big worry, no-one knows what happens in the future.". © 2021 BBC. What does the world want from Joe Biden? "Compliance in Sweden with the recommendations of the public health authority is incredibly high, it's about 80 per cent.". Earlier this year, the Swedish Government insisted that its unique approach reflected the nature of the pandemic and the wait for a vaccine, calling it "a marathon not a sprint". The lifting of Covid-19 lockdowns around the world was never going to be easy. But compared to other countries, it is considerably better, for instance if you compare to southern Europe," said Nordea bank chief analyst Torbjorn Isaksson. Like other Scandinavian nations, it has a small, open, economy that is dependent on international trade. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. But the model has come under fire, particularly in recent days after email exchanges of the country's chief epidemiologist at the beginning of the pandemic came to light. "I think it was naive, frankly, not to do more at the outset, [but] they would argue that it's okay and they seem quite pleased with their response," he said. They have stressed that the aim was to introduce sustainable, long-term, measures. Here are the current coronavirus border restrictions around Australia, Experts eye Howard Springs 'gold standard' quarantine, Oxford vaccine boss urges Australian rollout, How Caitlin and Ben bought their first home during a pandemic. These guidelines led to many people with health care needs unrelated to COVID-19 not getting the care they need, with some even dying as a result—collateral damage of Sweden’s COVID … The Nordic nation’s Covid-19 death rate remains considerably higher than in many other countries, at about 57 per 100,000. Last updated: 01/12/2021 Country-Specific Information: On December 14, Sweden enacted stricter national regulations and general advice to prevent the spread of Covid-19. .css-1xgx53b-Link{font-family:ReithSans,Helvetica,Arial,freesans,sans-serif;font-weight:700;-webkit-text-decoration:none;text-decoration:none;color:#FFFFFF;}.css-1xgx53b-Link:hover,.css-1xgx53b-Link:focus{-webkit-text-decoration:underline;text-decoration:underline;}Read about our approach to external linking. Patience a virtue as rain interrupts fourth Test between Australia and India, Bushfire destroys at least one property in Perth's south, Trump to leave Washington for nearby air base on Inauguration Day morning: reports, 'QAnon shaman' detained as prosecutors back away from US Capitol 'kill-capture' plot claim, Where can I travel to? Instead of mandated curfews and shutdowns, Sweden chose to keep most schools and businesses open throughout the COVID-19 outbreak. But given the rapid drop in daily recorded deaths since July, supporters of the controversial strategy are hopeful that the measures here will help provide long-term stability. Sweden is seeing an uptick in coronavirus infections and introducing targeted measures, but the country that famously refused to lock down is sticking to its guns and insisting coercive … VideoWhat does the world want from Joe Biden? "We've not really had draconian measures, but it's still obvious that it worked.". The latest figures are a sign of just how vulnerable Sweden is to global economic shifts. Read about our approach to external linking. Professor Goldsmith agrees, saying that only in years to come will we be able to fairly compare the different approaches adopted by nations around the world. One of the main factors in the current Swedish success however could be simply because it’s August, That’s the month when much of the country comes to a halt. How has Sweden fared in comparison with its Nordic neighbors that chose more comprehensive interventions? The country's approach has been more liberal than the lockdowns imposed in neighbouring countries or, indeed, around the world. In similarly sized Denmark, 697 people have died from covid-19, and the country has surprisingly registered the lowest number of deaths in its population for six years, according to Statens Serum Institut, the national infectious diseases agency. More than 5,700 Swedes have died since the start of the year and health authorities have since acknowledged there were clear failings in the preparedness of aged-care homes, just as we're seeing in Australia. But cases and deaths have fallen dramatically since a surge in infections earlier this year, professor of infectious disease epidemiology at Stockholm's Karolinska Institute Joakim Dillner said. Despite the contraction, Sweden is not yet in recession, since the first quarter saw growth of 0.1%. One girl's quest for clean water. What happens to your body in extreme heat? Sweden's coronavirus suppression strategy was an experiment that few other nations dared champion. It’s a time when Swedes desert the cities and head to their secluded summer homes to spend the day diving in lakes, sweating in saunas and drinking copious amounts of schnapps. But Professor Dillner says within the scientific community there is still "fierce debate" over the strategy that has been adopted. "There was no screening of the healthcare workers in homes for the elderly, and I think at least in the scientific community, we're upset about that," he said. Since hitting a peak in late June, Sweden's COVID-19 infection rate has fallen sharply in recent weeks. And that’s amid an increase in testing over the period. Video, Four-year-old's viral dinosaur song made into book, What does the world want from Joe Biden? Sweden … .css-1xgj2ad-InlineLink:link{color:#3F3F42;}.css-1xgj2ad-InlineLink:visited{color:#696969;}.css-1xgj2ad-InlineLink:link,.css-1xgj2ad-InlineLink:visited{font-weight:700;border-bottom:1px solid #BABABA;-webkit-text-decoration:none;text-decoration:none;}.css-1xgj2ad-InlineLink:link:hover,.css-1xgj2ad-InlineLink:visited:hover,.css-1xgj2ad-InlineLink:link:focus,.css-1xgj2ad-InlineLink:visited:focus{border-bottom-color:currentcolor;border-bottom-width:2px;color:#B80000;}@supports (text-underline-offset:0.25em){.css-1xgj2ad-InlineLink:link,.css-1xgj2ad-InlineLink:visited{border-bottom:none;-webkit-text-decoration:underline #BABABA;text-decoration:underline #BABABA;-webkit-text-decoration-thickness:1px;text-decoration-thickness:1px;-webkit-text-decoration-skip-ink:none;text-decoration-skip-ink:none;text-underline-offset:0.25em;}.css-1xgj2ad-InlineLink:link:hover,.css-1xgj2ad-InlineLink:visited:hover,.css-1xgj2ad-InlineLink:link:focus,.css-1xgj2ad-InlineLink:visited:focus{-webkit-text-decoration-color:currentcolor;text-decoration-color:currentcolor;-webkit-text-decoration-thickness:2px;text-decoration-thickness:2px;color:#B80000;}}The European Union saw a contraction of 11.9% for the same period. As deaths rise, many are questioning measures that appear relaxed compared with the rest of the world. Colombia’s Health Ministry reported 7,230 new cases of Covid-19 on Monday -- the lowest daily increase since August 4. "I think they've got to ask themselves: was that really the right way to go?" Ian Birrell travelled to Stockholm to investigate how Sweden's response to Covid-19 is panning out. Lead author Professor David Goldsmith has been critical of Sweden's approach. Health and frontline workers are first in line for jabs at vaccination centres across the country. An economy is generally deemed to be in recession if it contracts for two consecutive quarters. Staycations are popular here this summer, thanks to a slew of travel restrictions imposed on Sweden … But it has the highest per capita COVID-19 death rate of all Scandinavian countries. Sweden has largely relied on voluntary social distancing guidelines since the start of the pandemic, including working from home where possible and avoiding public transport. (For the UK it is 4600 and the US 15,400.) It was estimated that by rejecting tougher measures, 40 per cent of Stockholm's population would have achieved herd immunity by May. Published on August 31, 2020, 3:16 AM EDT Sweden's Prime Minister Stefan Löfven said public health officials were relying on "Folkvett" — the common sense of citizens — to ensure the health system wasn't overwhelmed. Sweden recorded its highest death tally in 150 years for the first half of 2020, according to the country's official statistics office. Data may also be adjusted slightly in the following days after August 27. This service may include material from Agence France-Presse (AFP), APTN, Reuters, AAP, CNN and the BBC World Service which is copyright and cannot be reproduced. That is less than other countries hit hard by Covid-19, such as Italy, Spain and the UK, but still similar to the rest of Scandinavia. Professor Goldsmith said. .css-14iz86j-BoldText{font-weight:bold;}Sweden, which avoided a lockdown during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, saw its economy shrink 8.6% in the April-to-June period from the previous three months. VideoFour-year-old's viral dinosaur song made into book, Why a teacher was killed 'execution-style' in Ethiopia, End to Gibraltar land border prompts joy and trepidation. The authorities here have always said the country's Covid-19 strategy wasn't designed to protect the economy. Did Sweden's coronavirus strategy succeed or fail? He has famously said that although the death rate was too high, "on the whole [Sweden] would go down the same route" if it had its time again. Why is this so significant in the battle to control COVID-19? He said antibodies weren't found in high rates in asymptomatic patients, meaning they're not likely to be immune. "They've had a death rate that's 10 times per million population of the local countries, which really are their best comparison.". If the economy continues to worsen, there may be sharper national debates about the decision not to lockdown and the subsequent early high death toll. Official data has been corrected on August 27, 2020. So far, Sweden has suffered around 5800 deaths – far smaller than the US' 167,000 deaths or the UK's almost 50,000 fatalities, according to Johns Hopkins University's coronavirus resource centre In March, Swedish Minister for Finance Magdalena Andersson said that the government believed that the Swedish economy would be heavily hit by the pandemic, with a 4% downturn in gross domestic product (GDP), similar to the levels seen following the 2008 financial crisis. "At this point, simply to look at one measure, which is the death rate, is just completely unscientific and completely misleading," he told the ABC. In Case of Emergency: Call 1-888-407-4747 (U.S./Canada); +1-202-501-4444 (overseas); or contact the nearest embassy: go.usa.gov/xduQM . Every day new official numbers are presented by Folkhälsomyndigheten and on the news but often without the proper context. COVID-19 leaking from hotel quarantine could be 'stopped in its tracks' by extra measure, experts say, Trump backers lose millions as big-name donors walk away after 'insurrection', Elon Musk gives wrong Signal, as consumers dump WhatsApp over 'badly timed' decision, Sydney man aligned with Islamic State faces court again after allegedly accessing extremist content, NSW records one COVID-19 case in Western Sydney, 11 in overseas hotel quarantine, Meet the 2021 Australian of the Year finalists, Ian Chappell warns the tide could turn for 'extremely lucky' Marnus Labuschagne. "Everybody would really love to have the answers to everything and know exactly what to do today," he said. The Oxford vaccine is now available. "One point would be to keep schools open to reach herd immunity faster," Dr Tegnell wrote. U.S. Citizen Travelers: Enroll for alerts at step.state.gov . VideoOne girl's quest for clean water, The surveillance of Martin Luther King Jr. VideoThe surveillance of Martin Luther King Jr, Striking news pictures from around the world. He believes one of Sweden's strengths is that public confidence in health advice appears to be strong, limiting the risk of fatigue in the long-run. Sweden's public health officials insisted their strategy was not focussed on cushioning the economy, but many were watching to see whether its light lockdown would lessen the pandemic's economic impact there. Two out of three Swedes seem to be not unhappy with what they have been doing," he said. .css-orcmk8-HeadlineContainer{display:-webkit-box;display:-webkit-flex;display:-ms-flexbox;display:flex;-webkit-box-pack:justify;-webkit-justify-content:space-between;-ms-flex-pack:justify;justify-content:space-between;}Final execution of Trump presidency is carried out.css-1dedj2h-Rank{-webkit-align-self:center;-ms-flex-item-align:center;align-self:center;color:#B80000;margin-left:3.125rem;}1, Centrist elected leader of Merkel's CDU party2, Tennis stars' arrival angers stranded Australians3, India begins world's biggest Covid vaccine drive4, Signal messaging service goes down amid user surge5, End to Gibraltar land border prompts joy and trepidation6, Nasa's 'megarocket' set to fire up engines7, 'Like a medieval battle': The riots frontline8, US expects 'rapid growth' of virus variant9, Why California is struggling to contain Covid10. 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