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  • People in Sweden in public spaces without taking preventive measures

    People in Sweden in public spaces without taking preventive measures | Photo: Twitter/@australian

Published 6 April 2020

In prior statements, Lofven dismissed the COVID-19 threat naming it a “little flu.”

Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofven warned citizens to prepare for thousands of deaths.  Despite the forecast, the Swedish government does not enforce restrictive measures to face  COVID-19.

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In prior statements, Lofven dismissed the COVID-19 threat naming it a “little flu.” Currently, the Swedish government is facing strong criticism for the lack of preventive measures taken to prevent the virus from spreading.  

The authorities of the Scandanavian country have not implemented quarantine or social isolation on the basis that they rely on the common sense of their citizens.Other government actions include recommendations such as handwashing, but do not enforce any concrete activities to stop the spread of the virus.

 In public and shared spaces, where there is still full access and movement, common spaces have not been closed, such as cafeterias or restaurants. The country's top epidemiologist, Anders Tegnell, explained that the goal in his country is to lower the infection curve to prevent hospitals from collapsing.

Some nations bordering Sweden show different progress, thanks to certain measures such as social isolation. Currently, Finland has just over 1,900 infected and eight dead, Denmark has over 4,000 confirmed cases and 161 dead, while Norway has over 5,000 infected and 58 dead. Sweden has already recorded more than 7,000 positive cases and more than 400 deaths from the virus. 

Regarding the Swedish government approach on public health, Claudia Hanson, a Stockholm-based senior lecturer in global public health affirmed: "They are used to making evidence-based decisions, but that doesn’t work for a pandemic like this, where key coordinates are unknown.”

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