Swedes ignore their first-ever lockdown amid rising infections


Swedes ignore their first-ever lockdown as country sees record number of new Covid infections with people continuing to cram onto buses and throw dinner parties despite restrictions

  • Sweden announced stricter recommendations for its three biggest cities 
  • Despite this, people are continuing to cram onto buses and hold dinner parties
  • The country registered a record 4,697 new coronavirus cases on Friday

Swedes have ignored their first ever lockdown as the country sees a record number of Covid-19 infections. 

People are continuing to cram onto buses and throw dinner parties despite government guidelines. 

Sweden announced stricter recommendations for its three biggest cities after the lockdown-free country saw its coronavirus infections double in two weeks. 

The new guidelines include staying away from non-essential shops and avoiding public transport, gyms and museums

Four Swedish regions, including those encompassing the cities of Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmo, have been included in the restrictions.

The new guidelines include staying away from non-essential shops and avoiding public transport, gyms and museums. 

According to Johan Nöjd, Uppsala’s regional infectious diseases doctor, crowded cities have prevented the infection rate from dropping.  

‘It’s difficult to see any impact since we had the highest amount of positive tests ever on Monday, a much higher record than in the spring,’ he told The Telegraph. 

According to Johan Nöjd, Uppsala's regional infectious diseases doctor, crowded cities have prevented the infection rate from dropping. Above, a man wearing a face mask waits for a train in the central train station during the COVID-19 pandemic in Stockholm

According to Johan Nöjd, Uppsala’s regional infectious diseases doctor, crowded cities have prevented the infection rate from dropping. Above, a man wearing a face mask waits for a train in the central train station during the COVID-19 pandemic in Stockholm

He attributed the record number of infections to people failing to follow two of the main government recommendations; avoiding unnecessary public transport and avoiding physical contact with people outside their household.

‘Perhaps more than 50 per cent are listening very attentively to the advice they hear, perhaps even 80 per cent, but then we have this 20 per cent to 40 per cent that is not listening at all,’ he said. 

In the city of Malmö, schools have closed to parents for the first time, and libraries have limited book borrowing. Meanwhile, in Skane, the region around Malmö, the number of Covid-19 cases has continued to rise. 

Cases in the region hit a seven-day average of 374 on Thursday, more than 75 per cent higher than on the day the new measures were introduced.

Fredrik Sund, who leads the infectious diseases clinic in Uppsala, has called for a national lockdown to stop the rising cases. 

Speaking on Swedish television, he said: ‘We need to bring in tougher restrictions which are backed by law, because we’ve now seen that these recommendations are too toothless. 

‘Now we’ve got a chance to do something about it. In a few weeks, it won’t have any effect.’

Sweden, which has shunned lockdowns throughout the pandemic, registered 4,697 new coronavirus cases on Friday, the highest number since the start of the pandemic

Sweden, which has shunned lockdowns throughout the pandemic, registered 4,697 new coronavirus cases on Friday, the highest number since the start of the pandemic

Sweden, which has shunned lockdowns throughout the pandemic, registered 4,697 new coronavirus cases on Friday, the highest number since the start of the pandemic, Health Agency statistics showed.

The increase compares with a high of 4,034 new daily cases recorded on Thursday. The Health Agency has said the peak during the spring probably ran many times higher but went unrecorded due to less testing at the time.

Sweden on Friday registered 20 new deaths from COVID-19, taking the total to 6,022 deaths. 

Sweden’s death rate per capita is several times higher than Nordic neighbours’ but lower than some larger European countries’, such as Spain and Britain.

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