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Sweden accuses the WHO of misinterpreting its number of infections

Sweden accuses the WHO of misinterpreting its number of infections

Sweden accuses the WHO of misinterpreting its number of infections

The World Health Organization (WHO) was forced yesterday to rectify a claim about an alleged "very significant" outbreak of coronavirus infections in Sweden, after the authorities of the Scandinavian country have accused it of misinterpreting the statistics.

The international organization had included Sweden in a list of countries with Armenia, Moldova, North Macedonia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Albania, Bosnia Herzegovina, Kyrgyzstan, Ukraine and Kosovo which it warned that an accelerated transmission of the virus “has led to a very significant resurgence that, if left unchecked, will push health systems to the limit once again.

The Swedish state epidemiologist, Anders Tegnell, categorically rejected this claim, calling it a complete misinterpretation of the data and arguing that the increase in positive cases is due to the increase in the detection tests and not to a recurrence of the infection. 

Until the end of May, only people with severe symptoms could be tested, while now they are also offered to those with mild signs. Last week, about 62,000 people took the test, while a month ago it was less than 30,000 weekly.

In the new statement, the WHO qualifies its previous statements, admitting that the Swedish Government has increased the tests and this is reflected in the statistics, although it notes that the number of new cases and the total number per 100,000 inhabitants remain relatively high. 

It is important to note that the percentage of positive results among the total tests remains stable at around 12% -13%, indicating that Sweden still has a social spread of the virus.
The WHO highlights several very positive trends, particularly a continuous reduction of new cases of seriously ill patients and a gradual reduction of patients in intensive care. 

This week, the number of people admitted to the ICU has dropped below 200. Two months ago there were 223 in Stockholm hospitals alone (now 46).

The WHO has not been the only organism that has indicated Sweden as one of the European countries that continues to be more affected by Covid-19. The European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) recently stated that Sweden and Poland are the only ones where the disease has not reached its peak, although it admitted that, in part, it can be explained by the increase in tests. 

The statistics of new infections are those that many countries - like the rest of the Nordics - are using to veto the entry of Swedish tourists.

The management of the coronavirus in Sweden, which has chosen to keep society open, has generated intense debate both within and outside its borders, focusing especially on high mortality. 

Sweden has registered 5,280 deaths, the fifth country with the most deaths in relation to the population (523 per million inhabitants), excluding microstates. While during the first months all the polls showed broad support for the authorities, the latest polls show a decline in confidence.

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