Sweden is discussing involving local lockdowns in an attempt to halt the spread of Covid-19, according to reports – after resisting the measure for several months.
The number of cases has risen dramatically over the past two weeks, with 970 confirmed on Thursday – the highest since June.
The country’s approach to the pandemic has been controversial, with businesses and schools being open everywhere, even though citizens have been advised to comply with social distance rules.
But according to Johns Hopkins University, which measures worldwide data on the pandemic, the country now has the 12th highest mortality rate in the world with 58.4 per cent. 1
This is 10 times the figure in neighboring Norway and Finland, although it is slightly lower than the UK’s 64.1 per capita. 100,000.
Sweden, which has a population of just over 10 million, has registered 5,918 deaths since the start of the pandemic.
Now the authorities are pushing for local lockdowns amid growing questions about the country’s approach.
Johan Nojd, head of the infectious diseases department in the city of Uppsala, told The Telegraph: “It’s more of a lockdown situation – but a local lockdown.”
As of tomorrow, health authorities are reportedly set to ask people to stay away from malls, gyms, libraries and museums.
Despite increasing urgency from health officials, these restrictions will not be legally enforceable, there will be no fines.
Bitte Brastad, Chief Legal Officer at the Swedish Public Health Agency, described the movement as “something between regulations and recommendations”.
But experts warn that it may be followed by further measures.
Senior epidemiologist Anders Wallensten claimed that the country has “a certain immunity as a consequence of how we have coped”, but denied that “herd immunity” had always been the goal.