Article Image
IPFS News Link • Pandemic

Sweden--Once Mocked for Its COVID Strategy--

• by Jon Miltimore

Early in the coronavirus pandemic, I asked a simple questionCould Sweden's laissez-faire approach to the coronavirus actually work?

Unlike its European neighbors and virtually all US states, the Swedes had opted to not shut down the economy. The country of 10 million people took what was at first described as "a lighter touch."

While other countries closed schools and businesses, life in Sweden stayed pretty normal. Kids went to public pools and libraries, while adults sipped wine and had lunch in local bistros. Though mass gatherings were prohibited, children kept going to school, though students older than 16 were encouraged to attend classes remotely. The Swedish government also encouraged people to work remotely and asked people over 70 to isolate themselves, if possible.

For taking this approach, Sweden—and the architect of its public health policies, Anders Tegnell—was widely condemned. Consider just a sampling of headlines: