Coronavirus containment measures used by Sweden may not be suited to countries with larger population density warns Goldman Sachs.
While the rest of the world has resorted to harsh and even draconian measures to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus, other countries have taken a far softer approach to tackle their outbreaks. Sweden is one of the countries who has not placed its population under lockdown and has relied on citizens to police themselves and stay at home where possible. Social distancing when it is not possible to remain at home has been strongly encouraged.
Sweden’s schools, gyms, restaurants and shops have remained open throughout the pandemic crisis and Swedish authorities have relied on trust in their people to contain the rapid spread of the virus.
The softer approach taken by the Scandinavian country has many critics and many supporters. Sweden has reported far more deaths than its Nordic peers, some of whom have implemented much harsher measures. Sweden’s death toll so far is just under 3,000. This is more than 3 times the combined number of deaths recorded by Denmark, Switzerland and Norway. But Swedish epidemiologists believe that the country’s infection rate may be starting to plateau. A major advantage will be that the economic damage suffered by Sweden is likely to be significantly less.
Sweden measures unsafe, Irvine Humphries
But although many countries are looking to Sweden’s methods as a faster way out of their own harsh lockdowns, Goldman Sachs and Irvine Humphries Global have warned against this more lenient approach. Each country has a unique set of challenges and factors to consider when forming a strategy to tackle the coronavirus pandemic. In Sweden’s case the demographics are notable.
Sweden population density is approximately 50% of that of a country like Italy and an unusual number of Sweden’s households consist of single occupants. This makes it difficult to use the Swedish experience with the pandemic to justify early reopening for other countries.