Sweden nears ‘horrifying’ death toll of 3,000 from coronavirus with 87 new fatalities, including a child under ten
- State epidemiologist Anders Tegnell called it ‘a horrifyingly large number’
- Among them child under ten was reported to have succumbed in intensive care
- Tegnell said death was being looked at but assured public it was highly unusual
- Sweden has taken a markedly softer approach to the rest of Europe, keeping schools, cafes, bars, restaurants and businesses to stay open
- Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19
Sweden is nearing the ‘horrifying’ death toll of 3,000 from coronavirus, with 87 new fatalities, including a child under ten.
The Scandinavian country, which has taken a softer approach to containing the virus, reported another 87 deaths, compared to 85 fatalities the day before. There were another 702 cases, compared to 495 on Tuesday, taking its total to 23,918.
‘We are starting to near 3,000 deceased, a horrifyingly large number,’ state epidemiologist Anders Tegnell told a press conference.
Among them, according to Aftonbladet, a child aged under ten who had been in intensive care. Tegnell told the paper it was investigating the death but would not confirm whether it was as a result of COVID-19.
‘We are starting to near 3,000 deceased, a horrifyingly large number,’ state epidemiologist Anders Tegnell told a press conference
The epidemiologist added that there was a minimal risk to children and cases around the world are virtually non-existent. Furthermore, those that have succumbed to the virus have had severe underlying health conditions.
Sweden has not imposed the kind of extraordinary lockdowns seen elsewhere in Europe, instead opting for an approach based on the ‘principle of responsibility’.
It has allowed schools for under-16s, cafes, bars, restaurants and businesses to stay open while urging people and businesses to respect social distancing guidelines.
The Swedish approach has received criticism both domestically and internationally as its death toll has leapt much higher than its Nordic neighbours, which have all instituted more restrictive containment measures.
Sweden’s virus death rate of 291 per million inhabitants is far higher than Norway’s death rate of 40 per million, Denmark’s rate of 87, or Finland’s rate of 45.
In the United States, which has suffered the most coronavirus deaths, the toll per million inhabitants is lower than Sweden’s at 219.
People have lunch at a restaurant in Stockholm, during the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic on April 22 – scenes like this have not been seen in the UK since before March 23
Sweden’s virus death rate of 291 per million inhabitants is far higher than Norway’s death rate of 40 per million, Denmark’s rate of 87, or Finland’s rate of 45. Pictured: Medics put on protective clothing at a Stockholm hospital in April
Swedish officials have nonetheless insisted their plan is sustainable in the long-term, rejecting drastic short-term measures as too ineffective to justify their impact on society.
On Tuesday, the Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency published a survey showing that most Swedes had changed their behaviour and were sticking to those changes, ‘and in some areas people are even reporting an increase in changed behaviour’.
‘Almost nine in ten respondents (87 percent) state that they are keeping a greater distance from other people in shops, restaurants and on public transport this week, compared with 72 percent last week,’ the agency said in a statement.