Sweden’s coronavirus death toll has surpassed 4,000 as the government continues to defend its “softer” approach.
AS of this morning, Sweden has recorded 4,029 deaths and 33,843 confirmed infections. There are currently 24,843 active cases with 304 of these classed as “critical”.
Ninety per cent of Sweden’s fatalities have been aged 70 and over.
State epidemiologist Anders Tegnell stands by the decision not to impose a nationwide lockdown, saying the economic costs were not worth the health benefits.
Though he has admitted more protection could have been given to care homes.
However, despite Sweden’s approach, the country’s economy has still been hit hard as it marks its worst recession in 80 years, with GDP forecast to shrink by 7 per cent this year.
Sweden’s death rate stands at 399 per million inhabitants, far higher than its Nordic neighbours, Denmark with 97 per million, Finland (55) and Denmark (47).
But it is still better than the worst-hit European nations which did opt for full lockdown, including Spain at 615 per million inhabitants, and Britain and Italy, both with 542.
Rather than enforcing confinement, Swedes were asked to respect social distance and increase their personal hygiene such as hand-washing.
Schools have been kept open for those aged under 16, along with bars, cafes, restaurants and retail businesses.