The “Swedish Experiment” During Covid, Part 1


Investigative journalist Johan Anderberg has written an account of Sweden’s response to Covid, "The Herd, How Sweden Chose Its Own Path Through the Worst Pandemic in 100 Years." The insights he gained have profound implications for our own public health strategies going forward. Sweden was heavily criticized for taking a relatively lax approach to school and business closures, compulsory masking and social distancing. Their health officials weighed the evidence, and decided on less stringent measures. After initial alarm at their high death rates, cases leveled off, and now Sweden boasts one of the lowest excess mortality statistics in Europe. Is allowing herd immunity to take effect the key to their success? Is there something about the Swedish lifestyle—adherence to a Nordic diet and lots of physical activity—that renders their population less vulnerable? Additionally, the Swedish economy took less of a hit, and their mental health—especially of young people—has been less impaired. According to Anderberg, Swedes wonder, after all the Sweden-bashing that took place in the U.S. and U.K. media early in the pandemic, why health journalists in those countries haven’t taken the time to re-examine their staunch advocacy for strict lockdown, distancing, and masking strategies. Click HERE for part 2.

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