Professors Gullberg and Ludvigsson have responded to our article about Sweden’s pandemic management. They wrote two articles in Svenska Dagbladet dismissing the effectiveness of face masks and claiming that Sweden had the lowest excess mortality in Europe from 2020-2022. Gullberg and Ludvigsson defended the SvD articles’ excess mortality measure, which halves Sweden’s diagnosed Covid-19 deaths, as they believe calculating the actual number of deaths is difficult. However, using actual death statistics in the Nordics, it is clear that Sweden had the highest death rate among the Nordic countries.
When the pandemic arrived in Sweden in 2020, precautionary measures like home quarantine, testing, and infection tracing were not implemented. Instead, inadequate measures were initiated too late, resulting in high death tolls in Sweden. The Public Health Agency did not invest in respiratory protection or require sick staff members to stay at home, leading to sky-high death tolls. Some defended the Swedish strategy, claiming that excess mortality statistics made it appear as if the management was successful. However, manipulating statistics ignores the high death tolls and is dangerous for future pandemics. The conclusions of the Corona Commission’s final report were dismissed, causing concern about future pandemics.
Professors Gullberg and Ludvigsson have responded to our article about the new attempts to beautify Sweden’s pandemic management, including in two articles in Svenska Dagbladet, which dismissed the benefit of face masks and stated that Sweden had the lowest excess mortality in Europe in the years 2020–2022.
Gullberg and Ludvigsson defends the SvD articles’ excess mortality measure – which halves Sweden’s diagnosed deaths from covid-19 – by claiming that the real number of dead is difficult to assess. But then they describe how the excess mortality measure can reach highly variable results, which goes against their own argumentation.
In fact, the actual death statistics in covid-19 in the Nordics are very safe and lend themselves well to comparisons. And according to this, Sweden undoubtedly has the highest death rate of the Nordic countries.
Management differed markedly from neighboring countries and was characterized by what appeared to be a herd immunity strategy.
When the pandemic came to Sweden in the spring of 2020, much was unknown. They did not know how the virus caused disease and therefore also how best to treat the seriously ill. The precautionary principle then suggests that measures are initially taken to prevent a potential disaster – measures such as home quarantine, testing and infection tracing. None of this happened.
Instead, inadequate measures were taken and for late measures (see the Corona Commission). During the spring of 2020, Sweden sometimes had the world’s highest death toll. Management differed markedly from neighboring countries and was characterized by what appeared to be a herd immunity strategy. This was something that the so-called Great Barrington Declaration (GBD) advocated in 2020, and which the WHO director declared dangerous and unethical. Both Gullberg and Ludvigsson are signatories to the GBD.
That the Public Health Agency has fulfilled its mission by including other aspects of public health when dealing with the pandemic is a truth with modification. The authority knew that care for the elderly was not resilient in the event of community contagion. Nevertheless, there were no regulations on respiratory protection, or rules that staff with sick people in the household should stay at home. Sky-high death tolls were the result.
The claim that the Public Health Agency – which for a long time denied asymptomatic infection, airborne infection and the benefit of respiratory protection – was successful in weighing different societal risks against each other is absurd. An authority does not have the right to make decisions that mean that a group of people is exposed to mortal danger in order to make others feel better. It smells like the 1930s. The only reasonable thing is that infection control is placed in a separate authority, to ensure a proper focus.
In the light of the high real death tolls, one can understand the craze for the aesthetic measure of excess mortality among defenders of the Swedish strategy. By manipulating statistics, the fatal Swedish management can be made to appear as even the best in Europe. But the danger for the future becomes tangible.
When aircraft accidents are investigated, the final reports are not followed by comments from the airline that the accident commission was wrong and no action therefore needs to be taken. But when the Corona Commission’s final report came, the conclusions were dismissed by both the Minister of Social Affairs and the Public Health Authority. People are amazed and tremble before what will happen in the next pandemic.