|Author (Corporate)||Cardiff EDC|
Overview and information sources focusing on the way authorities and population in Sweden tackled the outbreak of COVID-19 (coronavirus) in the country.
As the virus expanded its prevalence across Europe and world, Sweden formally registered its first COVID-19 case on 31 January 2020. The first reported death appeared on 11 March. However, national authorities increasingly gathered international attention due to an approach to the outbreak which differed from most countries in Europe and elsewhere. Importantly, the country was not imposed a formal lockdown, and the population was instead expected to follow a series of recommendations issued by the Public Health Agency (Folkhälsomyndigheten). Rather than politicians, this institution became the core of Sweden's approach to this coronavirus, led by the State Epidemiologist Anders Tegnell.
Following the Agency's advice, the Government approved legislation temporarily banning gatherings of over 50 individuals, visits to nursing homes and also closing secondary schools and universities. Primary schools remained open. Recommendations issued by the Agency included working from home whenever possible, avoiding unnecessary travel within the country, social distancing and shielding for the elderly as much as possible.
Sweden was widely reported by media outlets as registered some of the highest rates of virus presence and related death. Despite the good quality of the country's health system, strained services led to postponed surgeries. A debate was also ongoing regarding the existence of sufficient levels of personal protective equipment (PPE). Similarly to other European countries, nursing homes were particularly affected by the outbreak.
On 30 June, the Swedish Prime Minister announced the creation of a Commission to assess the country's handling of the pandemic.
|Countries / Regions||Sweden|