Anti-lockdown Sweden now has Western Europe’s LOWEST Covid infection rate despite wave rolling across the continent — after Swedes were told they don’t need to be tested if they’re double-vaccinated
- Oxford University-based research platform Our World in Data says there are 85.4 cases per million people
- This is 12 times the infection rate in the Netherlands, and almost seven times that in the UK and Germany
- But officials have told the double-vaccinated — which make up seven in ten people — not to get swabbed
- Critics say this has left Sweden ‘in the dark’ over the true extent of its current Covid wave
Sweden now has the lowest Covid infection rate in western Europe — after double-vaccinated nationals were told they don’t have to test for the virus even if they get symptoms.
The Scandinavian nation — which was subject to international scrutiny last year when it refused to lockdown — is currently recording 85.4 cases per million people, according to Oxford University research site Our World in Data.
By comparison, the rate is nearly 1,400 per million in Europe’s current Covid capital Austria, which today announced it is going back into a full lockdown from Monday.
And for the first time in the pandemic, Sweden is recording fewer cases per population size than its Scandinavian neighbours Denmark (655), Norway (351) and Finland (150).
But critics say Sweden has been left ‘in the dark’ over the true extent of its coronavirus wave because the double-vaccinated, equivalent to almost seven in ten people, are not being routinely swabbed.
Last week, Sweden broke ranks with its European neighbours once again and told Swedes they did not have to get tested if they were fully jabbed, even if they had symptoms. Covid swabbing rates plunged 35 per cent last week, compared to a month earlier.
But this week the policy was reversed in response to rising cases on the continent. A fresh wave of Delta is rolling across the continent and putting pressure on hospitals once again, which has forced most in the EU to bring back some form of curbs.
Latest figures show Sweden is only carrying out 1.26 tests per 1,000 people, which is also the lowest number in western Europe.
Sweden paused free Covid tests for the vaccinated last week but will restart the scheme from November 22.
At the time, its health agency argued the resources for testing could be better used elsewhere and that there was no need to test the fully vaccinated because they have a low risk of getting sick and are less likely to spread the disease.
It is currently carrying out just 1.26 tests per 1,000 people, the lowest number in western Europe. For comparison, the UK is carrying out 12 times more swabs, Austria 47 times more, and France almost four times more.
Swedes have complained that Covid tests are inconvenient because — unlike in Britain — they require people to submit their bank ID and speak to clinicians who decide whether they should be swabbed.
The Scandinavian nation became an international outlier last year when it defied scientific advice and refused to follow the rest of the world in shutting down society to curb the virus’ spread.
What Covid restrictions are in place in Sweden?
The country — which dodged a lockdown unlike most other nations — also has next to no Covid restrictions in place.
It dropped its final measures recommending people to work from home where possible on September 29.
And advice for people to wear face masks on public transport was abandoned on July. Unlike in other countries the coverings were never compulsory.
On November 11 Swedish health authorities went even further telling double-vaccinated people they no longer needed to swab themselves for the virus.
Read more at https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-10220541/Sweden-Western-Europes-LOWEST-Covid-infection-rate.html