April 12 Update

Hej, Hello, Välkommen!

Unfortunately today, the number of people infected with COVID-19 in Sweden has risen above the 10,000 mark which is saddening. The deaths have risen to just below 900, standing at 899 at the last update reported today.

We are in a time which is scary, and worrying for many people, including myself and my family as some of them are in the ‘at risk’ groups. As I hope you will have seen from the news today, Boris Johnson had been released from hospital, he had this to say upon his release;

Everybody within the Conservatives, and I’m sure the wider community are so relieved that Boris is out of hospital, but that doesn’t mean he is ‘cured’, he’s still at risk and is now resting in the PM’s summer residence, Chequers.

Here in Sweden, some expats are confused at the response from the Government regarding COVID-19, some are asking who’s actually running the country’s response to the pandemic. The Local cover it in this article, but a brief synopsis is that Sweden rely on scientific research from public agencies, and so we are receiving daily updates from the state epidemiologist (statsepidemiolog) on behalf of the Public Health Agency (Folkhälsomyndigheten) on what’s happening, and reminding people of the Government’s recommendations.

So while we don’t have as strict rules – for now – from the Government, they are looking at getting the powers to be able to take urgent steps surrounding the virus. These haven’t been confirmed by Parliament yet, but the debate is on going and I believe the overall consensus will be that they pass. But what do these powers give the Government?

It could allow them to close ports, all schools, gyms, restaurants, shops etc, but it has been confirmed that there won’t be a curfew, as this is seen as too strict. Once there is more information on the pending bill, we will endeavour to update you as soon as possible.

On Friday 03 April, the Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs has advised everybody against all but essential travel to all other countries in the efforts to reduce the spread of the virus.

The situation is ever changing, we hear some tomfoolery stories of people burning 5G masts because some person has started a Chinese-whisper that 5G frequency spreads the disease. Spoiler alert: it doesn’t.

Until next time, Stay Safe. Stay Home. Save Lives.

MvH

Ryan
Country Representative and Branch Chairman

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