Swedish Virus Deaths ‘Catastrophically High’ But Herd Immunity Not on Horizon

JANERIK HENRIKSSON/TT News Agency/AFP via Getty Images

Several Swedish medical experts have slammed the government’s response to the Chinese coronavirus pandemic, stating that the death toll is “catastrophically high” as a report reveals herd immunity is likely not on the horizon.

The six academics, including Uppsala University Professor of Infectious Diseases Björn Olsen and Professor Emeritus of Clinical Virology at the Karolinska Institutet Anders Vahlne, compared Sweden to several other countries and noted that nearly all others had successfully decreased infections.

“Other countries with high death rates are starting to get a curve that slopes downhill. This is as a result of the strict anti-infection measures implemented in almost all countries,” the experts said in an opinion article published in Aftonbladet on Thursday.

They went on to add that while Sweden has a stable position in terms of deaths and new cases, the overall trend is bad compared to other countries which have reduced cases and deaths.

“But that does not reflect that our situation from a global perspective must be considered disastrous. If the Public Health Authority does not address this fact, it is high time that the decision-makers in our country, government, and parliament do so,” they said.

Results of the Swedish National Health Authority’s tests for coronavirus antibodies was also announced on Wednesday and showed that in Stockholm, the city hardest hit by the outbreak, just 7.3 per cent of candidates tested positive for antibodies with other areas of Sweden testing as low as 3.7 per cent.

Anders Tegnell, Swedish state epidemiologist and head of the government’s coronavirus response, claimed the numbers were not accurate and Stockholm was probably at 20 per cent, not seven.

But the numbers mean that so-called “herd immunity” will not be achieved in Sweden this month, as previously predicted by mathematics professor Tom Britton.

The consequences of Sweden’s coronavirus policy is also set to impact the Swedish tourism sector and Swedish holidaymakers, as many countries around Sweden are opening their borders to each other — but not to Sweden.

Mika Salminen, health safety manager at Finland’s Institute for Health and Welfare, said it was much riskier for Finland to allow Swedish tourists in as opposed to tourists from other countries that enacted lockdown measures, like Norway or Denmark.

“It is a political decision, but the actual difference in the spread of infection is a fact, and I suppose the government, of course, takes that into account,” he said on Wednesday.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)breitbart.com


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