Sweden itself has recorded one of many highest per capita dying tolls linked to the virus on the continent. In contrast to Italy, Spain, France and Britain, Sweden didn’t impose a lockdown.
Talking to Sveriges Radio, a public broadcaster, over the weekend, Swedish state epidemiologist Anders Tegnell defended his method, saying that Italy relied on “fewer resources” to struggle the virus.
The remarks struck a nerve in Italy, the place greater than 33,000 individuals have died of covid-19. In Sweden, a rustic with a inhabitants about one-sixth the scale of Italy’s, greater than four,200 individuals have died.
“Everybody exterior of Italy ought to categorical solely reward and solidarity to our nation and our individuals,” the Italian ambassador to Sweden, Mario Cospito, wrote in a response Wednesday, referencing Italy’s excessive life expectancy and its excessive rating in worldwide well being system comparisons.
Cospito added that Sweden and different international locations had extra time to arrange for the arrival of the pandemic, as Italy was the second main hotbed of the outbreak after China.
Sweden’s dealing with of the outbreak has been controversial. By refraining from imposing a lockdown, critics have argued, the nation willingly accepted one of many world’s highest per capita dying tolls, with nursing properties particularly arduous hit.
Swedish well being officers have acknowledged the toll the virus has taken. “Our largest failure has been for our aged inhabitants,” Karin Ulrika Olofsdotter, Sweden’s ambassador to the US, recently told The Washington Post. However officers have additionally famous what they see as successes, together with residents who acted responsibly with out the federal government being pressured to impose main restrictions.
Tegnell additionally referred to “a stage of immunity within the inhabitants” within the capital, Stockholm, to defend the method, suggesting that it’d put together the nation higher for a second wave of infections.
Later Friday, fellow Nordic international locations Denmark and Norway each introduced that they might be easing journey restrictions between their respective international locations, however excluding Sweden due to its coronavirus depend.