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The Swedish Deception - Report
Internal emails from FOI's question the integrity of the Swedish strategy
This report looks at a number of studies and internal communications to examine the integrity of Sweden’s pandemic response.
International role model?
It’s difficult to know the extent to which one country influenced another, perhaps some found the confirmation bias they were looking for in those with similar strategy ideas. We do know that representatives of other countries, for example Sweden’s Anders Tegnell lobbied other countries to adopt his strategy throughout the pandemic, even meeting with the UK Government later in 2020. Tegnell had come under criticism early on after emails showed the epidemiologist in charge of Sweden’s strategy appearing to ask whether a higher death rate among older people might be acceptable if it led to faster herd immunity. Tegnell insists the Swedish objective was not to achieve herd immunity but rather to slow the spread of covid enough for health services to cope, however its emerged through freedom of information requests that Tegnell had deleted some of his official emails leaving gaps in the evidence trail.
Lobbing for mass infection
While Swedish authorities claim they weren’t actively pursuing herd immunity, it doesn’t appear that way when looking at some of Tegnell and his colleagues lobbying in other countries during 2020.
Allegedly in March, Swedish officials made contact with Finnish authorities on multiple occasions with concern regarding Finland's decision to close schools. On the 12 March Finland had passed the Emergency Preparedness Act, their equivalent to the UK’s coronavirus bill which would bring in various measures including school closures. Freedom of information requests by Swedish journalists show Tegnell discussing herd immunity in mid-March in an exchange with Finland’s pandemic advisor Mika Salminen and the head of the Swedish national health agency suggesting one way of tackling the epidemic would be to allow healthy people to become infected voluntarily in controlled settings. “One point would be to keep schools open to reach herd immunity faster,” Tegnell recommended.
In an interview in May 2020 Johan Giesecke confirmed he’d spoken with his Finnish colleague Salminen about herd immunity. A Swedish physician Giesecke has worked as an advisor to the Public Health Agency of Sweden during the pandemic, and in 2020 became a member of the WHO’s Strategic and Technical Advisory Group for Infectious Hazards, previously he worked for the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, led a group at the WHO on International Health Regulations and spent fifteen years as Sweden's state epidemiologist from 1995-2005. He’s said to have been involved in Tegnell’s appointment by the Swedish Government.
27 March, After a meeting with Tegnell and Johan Carlson ( Director of Sweden’s Public Health Agency), Giesecke send a message to Preden Aavitsland, at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health to tell him that “Norway is doing wrong.” Throughout March to May Giesecke repeatedly appeared on the front pages of Norwegian newspapers claiming Norway was following the wrong path and should adopt the Swedish strategy. Critics of Giesecke found his approach combative and suggested Sweden was too fixated on following an influenza pandemic plan, once again drawing a parallel with the UK’s early planning.
In April Tegnell warned the European Centre for Disease Control against recommending masks as it would imply the spread was airborne while Giesecke was interviewed on ITV News in the UK where he said the UK had started in the right direction, you can’t lock people in for 18 months and Stockholm would reach herd immunity in a month’s time in mid-May. When asked if he would accept he might be wrong, Giesecke replied “highly unlikely”.
22 April Tegnell and the Swedish ambassador attend the “Experience Exchange Brazil-Sweden, telling Brazil they need to learn to live with the virus. They estimated 20-30% of Stockholm was already immune and suggested children don’t spread covid. However an antibody study conducted at the end of April showed only 7.3% of Stockholmers had antibodies but Tegnell claimed antibodies were likely to have risen to 20% in the few weeks between the studies data collection and its publication in May. This claim wasn’t evidenced.
7 May Tegnell held a second webinar in Brazil where he stated no one in Sweden had been denied care, no children were sick and there had been no reinfections, Sweden was in a better situation that Copenhagen and New York who had gone into lockdown showing that there was no need for masks or quarantine, “Everyone has received the same level of treatment treatment they would normally do”. All of these statements are demonstrably incorrect, but these claims are made repeatedly by Tegnell and the Swedish authorities throughout 2020.
The Swedish strategy is successful, Tegnell told Brazil, “We’re reaching herd immunity; lockdowns are ineffective; isolating exposed is costly,” and on 14 May Brazilian President announced to a meeting of business leaders Brazil would be adopting a strategy of “vertical isolation”citing Sweden as the example they would be following.
“The federal government, if it’s up to us, is all open with vertical isolation and that’s that. The governors each assumed their responsibility, there was competition among many to see which closed the most.” Bolsonaro said, continuing. “Who defended more the life of your boter, the citizen of your state in relation to others. The federal government was never an obstacle. If it had depended on me, almost nothing would have been closed, like Sweden.”
Although it’s likely Bolsonaro just wanted to ignore covid anyway, it could be argued Tegnell and provided the confirmation bias and justification Bolsonaro was looking for. The results of this are clear for all to see with its high death rate. Bolsonaro’s use of language sounding like he had to battle against the scientists to protect people’s freedom is reminiscent of Trump and also of sceptic Conservative MPs and right wing media in the UK.
An inquiry in Brazil in May 2021 concluded that President Bolsonaro had deliberately pursued a herd immunity strategy, as the New York Time’s reports.
In March last year (2020), as the pandemic was unfurling, a social media campaign called “Brazil Can’t Stop” was launched by the president’s communications unit. Urging people not to change their routines, the campaign claimed that “coronavirus deaths among adults and young people are rare.” The heavily criticized campaign was eventually banned by a federal judge and largely forgotten.
Then the plot thickened. The government’s former communications director, Fabio Wajngarten, told the inquiry that he didn’t know “for sure” who had been responsible for the campaign. Later, stumbling over his words, he seemed to remember that his department had developed the campaign — in the spirit of experimentation, of course — which was then launched without authorization. A senator called for the arrest of Mr. Wajngarten, who threw a contemplative, almost poetic glance to the horizon. The camera even tried to zoom in. It was wild.
The upshot of their accounts is obvious, yet still totally outrageous: President Jair Bolsonaro apparently intended to lead the country to herd immunity by natural infection, whatever the consequences. That means — assuming a fatality rate of around 1 percent and taking 70 percent infection as a tentative threshold for herd immunity — that Mr. Bolsonaro effectively planned for at least 1.4 million deaths in Brazil.
After all, the president seemed to do everything he could to facilitate the spread of the virus. He has spent the last year speaking and acting against all scientifically proven measures to curb the spread of the virus. Social distancing, he said, was for “idiots.” Masks were “fiction.” And vaccines can turn you into a crocodile.
Then there was the antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine, which Mr. Bolsonaro promoted as an early treatment and miracle cure for Covid-19 — despite all scientific evidence to the contrary and the express advice of two former health ministers. During the inquiry, two different witnesses somberly confirmed that they had seen the draft of a presidential decree stipulating that the drug’s leaflet should be changed to include its use against Covid-19.
(Hydroxychloroquine had been promoted by America’s Frontline Doctors and Elizabeth Vliet and Peter McCullough of Truth for Health Foundation. McCullough is also a Pandata member. AFLD’s founding member Simone Gold, Vliet and McCullough are all members of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons founded in 1943 to oppose public funded healthcare.)
“It gets worse. According to both Mr. Wajngarten and Carlos Murillo, the regional manager of Pfizer, the pharmaceutical company repeatedly offered to sell its Covid-19 vaccine to Brazil’s government between August and November last year — but got no answer at all. (Perhaps the health ministry had more important things to do, like learning how to properly use masks.) Considering that Brazil was one of the first countries to be approached by the company, a quick response would have secured Brazilians as many as 1.5 million doses at the end of 2020, with 17 million more in the first half of 2021.”
“Instead, after turning down another three offers the government eventually signed a contract in March, a staggering seven months after the first offer. The first one million doses arrived in late April. The rollout, as a result of the government’s negligence in securing vaccines, has been halting, with regular shortages of shots and a lack of supplies leading to delays in production.”
The influence of the herd immunity lobbyists and disinformation doctors certainly seems to have influenced Bolsonaro. Sweden’s Anders Tegnell also spent time lobbying for Brazil to adopt his strategy. How did the natural herd immunity plan work out for Brazil?
“It seems ever more clear that herd immunity, through obstruction, disinformation and negligence, was always the aim. In Manaus, where 76% of the population had been infected by October, the result was not hard immunity: It was a new variant.”
After being quoted repeatedly in certain sections of India’s media, Tegnell held a webinar for the country in May 2020 estimating vaccine production will only start at the end of 2021 to suggest herd immunity is the only way forward. He also claims no one in Sweden has had covid twice, however due to his advice Sweden were only testing patients in hospitals so the likelihood of identifying reinfections were less likely than in other countries that had already reported this happening, there was also a policy that people weren’t tested again after having had covid. Tegnell said at the webinar at least 20% of the people in Stockholm were already immune and that they had mostly had a very mild, unnoticeable disease, and claimed masks cause more problems than benefits, suggesting it was better to stay at home when sick ignoring the argument that a benefit of universal masking is to reduce the risk of asymptomatic cases who aren’t feeling sick from infecting others.
In June 2020 Giesecke advised Rahul Ghandi, a member of the Indian National Congress that “I think for India you will ruin your economy very quickly if you had a severe lockdown. I think it’s better to skip the lockdown, let people have the infection. Most people won’t notice, it’s a mild disease.”
In April 2021 the Great Barrington Declaration authors argued that so many people had already been infected in India that they didn’t need to worry about vaccinating the majority of their population. This was just before the Delta variant swept through India producing horrific images of packed cremation grounds, the official death toll from the Delta wave is thought to be a gross underestimate with the true death toll possibly standing between three to five million.
Giesecke appeared in the media in Belarus in May 2020 saying hand washing and social distancing are the only scientifically effective measures, and that after a year, all countries will have reached Sweden’s case figures. Herd immunity was the only way to stop the virus. Also in May Giesecke said roughly the same to New Zealand’s press, telling them it was futile to try and stop the spread of covid, Sweden’s approach was more scientific and that infection was better than a vaccine was likely to be.
This was at the same time as Giesecke’s article “The invisible pandemic” was published in The Lancet. A correspondence piece he estimated by assumptions 20-25% in Stockholm had been infected by the end of April; as mentioned earlier positive antibody testing at the end of April turned out to only be 7.3%.
Perhaps as an effort of national PR, perhaps because they genuinely believed, Swedish politicians were out in force speaking via conference call and writing articles for audiences around the world. In the Spring of 2020 just the Minister for Foreign Affairs Ann Lindle gave seventy interviews to foreign press. The lists go on, Tegnell, Gisecke and the Swedish government weren’t happy with running a herd immunity experiment in their own country, they wanted to export it to others.
Another email released to Swedish journalists was an email titled “Big, big thanks” from Martin Kulldorff who went on to co-author the Great Barrington Declaration. “Thank you for your wise and epidemiologically sound Covid-19 work. Not only important for Sweden, but also as a model for the rest of the world.” Was this a meeting of minds or did Sweden influence the Great Barrington Declaration? Sweden’s creative use of statistics to justify its strategy certainly aided the Great Barrington Declaration in captivating politicians and the media. Tegnell would go on to meet with other governments during the year including Ireland and in the UK alongside Kulldorff’s GBD co-author Sunetra Gupta.
The Swedish government has proven to be a belligerent bastion for the herd immunity crowd to fly their flag. Late April 2020 I was chatting to an activist in a Swedish teaching union who opposed the herd immunity strategy. They explained to me how large lags in data were distorting their covid curve, lags in reporting means the daily dashboard release was always an undercount making the graphs permanently look like they were flattening. This was constantly touted by politicians and media as evidence the strategy was working, however they ignored the fact each day's backfilling raised the previous week’s figures back into growth gradient. In a televised Swedish committee session on the 25 April an advisor predicted the total pandemic deaths for Sweden would be 2,000 while the UK’s would be 12,000, later that day the UK’s death toll passed 13,000. The narrative of the false flattening persisted in the media long after it was reasonable to be an honest oversight.
There seems to be more trust in government in Sweden than in countries like the US and UK, largely the media were happy to support the general direction of the government’s strategy, much as in the UK where we had a week of herd immunity being sold to us until other voices managed to cut through and Johnson was “bounced” as some claim into a lockdown.
Children and Schools
Dissenting voices faced hostile opposition on many fronts, culminating in death threats for some, I know of at least one campaigner who moved to another country such was the level of threat they felt. The Swedish grassroot union activists I know, particularly those from education and healthcare unions felt abandoned by their unions’ leadership, feeling that there wasn’t enough scrutiny of the evidence justifying a lack of mitigations in education settings due to the government being led by the political party their union was aligned to. There's been a lot of talk in the UK about “British exceptionalism” however it appears we aren’t alone with Sweden suffering its own exceptionalist attitude.
Once again we see the importance of allowing transmission in schools as an integral part of a herd immunity strategy, Sweden went to considerable efforts in trying to argue that schools had minimal impact of transmission with the Public Health Agency of Sweden and the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare’s infamous “Covid-19 in school children - a comparison between Finland and Sweden. The report concluded “Closing schools had no effect”, the data having turned up some interesting results, while Finland had followed suppression with schools closed they had more confirmed cases than Sweden which had allowed massive spread and kept their primary schools open, however what the Swedish authorities and the supporters of their strategy failed to mention as they promoted this report around the world was that Sweden wasn’t testing children, they were only testing hospital admissions which was actually stated in the report.. What they also failed to mention was that Sweden saw many times more children admitted to ICU than Finland.
Evidence mounts of the Swedish strategy being intentionally misleading. Anna Ekstorn the Swedish Minister of Education told the public there that school children don’t spread infection, they didn’t close schools because they didn’t need to be closed, Tegnell told the foreign media “if children don’t go to school their parents need to stay at home and we know of economic calculations that have been given to us that then about 20% of the workforce disappears from the Swedish work market”, but in discussions with his Finnish counterpart Tegnell suggested keeping schools open might spread the virus faster and speed up the path towards herd immunity.
9 August the Daily Mail’s in-house GP said on Ian Payne’s LBC show that she’d studied Sweden and there was no sign of transmission in schools, similar claims about Sweden were still being made in 2022. I wonder if she had done any research at all or was just repeating talking points made by others, a quick search of local Swedish news media was all it took to find a slew of stories about schools having to close.
“In the town of Skellefteå, a teacher died and 18 of 76 staff tested positive at a school with about 500 students in preschool through ninth grade. The school closed for 2 weeks because so many staff were sick, but students were not tested for the virus.” Tweeted Christian Drosten, the world renowned German virologist on 28 May along with a link to a piece in Science.org by Gretchen Vogel, ”How Sweden wasted a ‘rare opportunity' to study coronavirus in schools - One of the few countries to keep primary schools open failed to collect data on children’s role in pandemic.”
Vogel explains, “That made the country a perfect natural experiment about schools' role in viral spread that many others could have learned from as they reopen schools or ponder when to do so. Yet Swedish officials have not tracked infections among school children—even when large outbreaks led to the closure of individual schools or staff members died of the disease.”
Continuing. "It's really frustrating that we haven't been able to answer some relatively basic questions on transmission and the role of different interventions," says Carina King, an infectious disease epidemiologist at the Karolinska Institute (KI), Sweden's flagship medical research centre. King says she and several colleagues have developed a protocol to study school outbreaks, "but the lack of funding, time, and previous experience of conducting this sort of research in Sweden has hampered our progress."
"There is some data collection happening in children, but it's not focused around schools or, as far as I know, will not answer questions around transmission."
This has been a regular complaint of campaigners I know in Sweden, the government can claim anything it wants about schools and transmission when it isn’t bothering to collect the data, all those claims made about Sweden in the UK, the US and elsewhere made the mistake of equating no evidence of transmission with evidence shows no transmission.
“Clinical epidemiologist Jonas Ludvigsson, who has published two review articles about COVID-19 in children, thinks tracing infected people's contacts is of little use at this point in the epidemic. "The virus is so widespread in society that responsible people do not think it is a good idea to trace individuals. We only test symptomatic individuals. I agree with that," he wrote in response to Science asking whether researchers were tracking school outbreaks.”
“Ludvigsson added that Swedish privacy laws allow health care personnel and school officials to notify parents and school staff about an infection only "if a person's life is at risk." Because severe complications from the new coronavirus are so rare in children, that does not apply to cases of COVID-19, he says. "Consider if your own child … had COVID-19," he wrote. "None of the kids will want to play with a child who has COVID-19, even if most kids will have no symptoms or only ‘some fever and a cough.'"
This is the same mentality we saw in the UK when they stopped contact tracing in March, if the strategy is to allow high transmission then contact tracing has no purpose, it has been suggested this was why the DfE’s guidance for contact tracing was lacking in logic, along with failure to accept aerosol transmission. Ludvigsson also fails to recognise school communities will include people at higher risk from covid, as for the comment “none of the kids will want to play with a child who has covid”, that makes me wonder why the UK Government was reluctant to introduce asymptomatic testing into schools.
“In a review paper published 19 May in Acta Paediatrica, Ludvigsson concluded that children are "unlikely to be the main drivers" of COVID-19 spread. He cited case studies from France and Australia but wrote that, "So far there have been no reports of COVID-19 outbreaks in Swedish schools," citing "personal communication" from Anders Tegnell, Sweden's state epidemiologist, on 12 May. "This supports the argument that asymptomatic children attending schools are unlikely to spread the disease," Ludvigsson wrote.”
“However, a scan of Swedish newspapers makes clear that school outbreaks have occurred. In the town of Skellefteå, a teacher died and 18 of 76 staff tested positive at a school with about 500 students in preschool through ninth grade. The school closed for 2 weeks because so many staff were sick, but students were not tested for the virus. In Uppsala, staff protested when school officials, citing patient privacy rules, declined to notify families or staff that a teacher had tested positive. No contact tracing was done at the school. At least two staff members at other schools have died, but those schools remained open and no one attempted to trace the spread of the disease there. When asked about these cases, Ludvigsson said he was unaware of them. He did not respond to a query about whether he would amend the review article to include them.”
Meanwhile other released emails add further weight to accusations of ongoing deliberate deception. A research letter published in the New England Journal of Medicine on 6 January 2021 by Jonas Ludvigsson of Sweden’s Karolinska Institute received much attention around the world as evidence it had been safe to keep schools open without protective measures whilst community transmission was high from March to June 2020. Ludvigsson’s studies are quoted by a range of authorities for justifying a lack of measures in schools, this includes the UK’s Royal College of Paediatric Health and Care website which still states that children don’t play a significant role in transmission.
Ludvigsson would go on to be a signatory of the Great Barrington Declaration, while his research was used within Sweden to support Anders Tegnell’s high transmission strategy it was also cited around the world as evidence that transmission in schools was rare, that asymptomatic children didn’t transmit the virus and that risks to children were negligible. His letters to scientific journals are still quoted by the sections of the UK media that still claim Sweden got it right and we never needed measures. The problem is that mortality did rise in Swedish children, but the greater problem is that Ludvigsson and Tegnell knew this whilst continuing to claim schools were safe.
Questions had already been raised about the 6 Jan report before a freedom of information request obtained private emails between Ludvigsson and Tegnell. As the Science publication reported, an email from Ludvigsson in July 2020 said “unfortunately we see a clear indication of excess mortality among children ages 7-16 old, the ages where kids went to school”, Ludvigsson wrote to Tegnell regarding the Swedish data “excess mortality +68%.” Continuing he wrote that the increase could be a fluke, especially as the numbers are small, he noted deaths in 1-6 year olds were below average for the same period so combining the age groups helped even out the increase. Ludvigsson said it would take too long to track down the causes of death due to ethical restrictions so asked for Tegnell’s help to do this. More than a year later a cause for these additional deaths wasn’t determined.
It says something about the mentalities at play that taking the time to track down the cause of a 68% increase in child mortality in school ages wasn’t considered a priority, and was obscured by including younger age groups to justify a negligent attitude to transmission in schools. The strategy must be right therefore anything that challenges this must be a mistake and should be dismissed, reports and studies are produced to fit the strategy not to inform the strategy. It’s a parody of science.
Evaluation of Sweden’s Response - Nature study
In March 2022 an extensive study on Sweden's covid strategy was published in Nature. Containing extensive official documents and internal emails, below is a thread I wrote at the time comparing the damming report to the UK response.
Sweden never officially admitted following herd immunity as a strategy, but internal docs show this was a significant consideration in policy decisions
Internally Sweden saw children and schools as a way of facilitating herd immunity whole publicity claiming children didn't play a role in transmission
Remember Viners April systematic review? "Schools don't play a significant role in transmission"We had less likely to be infected, then less likely to infect, then "community transmission" then it was no need for measures as all the kids have been infected already. Viners report was still quoted in the Green Book for local authorities in late 2021, its also quoted in some of the Swedish documents.
PHEs tame paediatricians are still claiming its just "community transmission" After writing the report Viner was brought into SAGE meetings
FOI requests regularly denied and redacted. Plan focused on "not spreading fear" they persuaded themselves not telling the truth was in the public interest.
Protecting the economy prioritised.
Very much like the "stop living in fear" "end of lockdown anxiety" articles we were flooded with by media. This was the same time as eat out to help out... Sweden relied almost entirely on their own studies ignoring international evidence just like the UK, eg DfE on school transmission, their masks survey, air filters. Despite large amounts of evidence DfE only looks at their own often under powered studies, often poor methods
"Elderly people were administered morphine instead of oxygen despite available supplies"🤯
Horrific, sounds like the UK care home home scandal⬇️
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Sweden saw keeping any measures out of schools as an important part of the strategy, withholding testing means they could deny having any evidence of transmission, however now data on longcovid and harms of losing relatives is mounting
Took ages to get testing into UK schools
Unlike most other countries school attendance remained mandatory, parents were fined for keeping children off to protect CEV kids/ families. This is exactly UK policy, see @Sandyboots2020 @SafeEdForAll_UK @Parents_Utd @_f4vl @OneVoice_Group @cv_cev for many examples
Swedish authorities misrepresented and manipulated the data they did have on children's role in transmission, so those using Swedish data to argue against measures in schools were using unreliable evidence
Previously released internal emails show Ludvigsson and Tegnell finding an increase in child mortality and then deciding how to make this inconvenient fact go away.
Lack of transparency on data, Schools not informing parents of outbreaks, just like UK, remember the UK cases vs outbreak reporting that fudged the scale of the problem particularly autumn/winter 2020
Care home deaths cover up in Sweden.
As I said earlier, lying to prevent fear and worry was considered to be for the greater good. Thou shall not question your Government
1No gov evidence provided until April, like UK, lots of redaction and issues with FOI requests, hard to see how guidance was produced. DfE has confirmed it didn’t write schools guidance in 2020.
I think Swedish journalists have now gotten a lot more information out of their government than we have in the UK
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In Sweden they deleted emails requested, in the UK the main deleting has been over contracts to chums, when it comes to pandemic strategy the UK just refuse
In April 2020 Sweden set up a new committee that would oversee decisions in secrecy
The US and UK also did this, remember the Joint Biosecurity Centre?T hey were apparently responsible for the chilli peppers alert levels. Costs a lot of money but we never hear about them
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1 - The fact that the govt ignored SAGE's advice on lockdown doesn't come as a big surprise as SAGE has been increasingly sidelined since the setting up of the in July The JBC is part of the "NHS" Test and Trace Service run byOn 8 July, the UK govt sidelined SAGE in favour of the secretive Joint Biosecurity Centre headed by a senior spy. On 22 July Downing St took control of data On 14 July, the Trump admin ordered hospitals to send all #COVID data to HHS Protect, run by #Palantir Notice a pattern? https://t.co/PdjEbRXBmXStefan Simanowitz @StefSimanowitz
Sweden were very selective with which experts they conferred with. Those academics who disagreed found themselves in difficult situations
Need to go pretend to be a responsible adult, will go back to do the rest of this later in the evening.
"Don't be alarmist"
Government gaslighting in Sweden as in UK was aided by media compliance, and government experts.
Critics of the government were attacked by the media. Just think how the BMJ’s covid inquiry series had been attacked by right wing media and professionals working with the UK government.
Debate occurred via newspaper opinion pieces, like the UK
Expert advice was ignored. Didn't deal with air filtration, transmission in schools or variants
If you haven't read recent SAGE papers, this is exactly what the UK government is currently doing and has done since mid 2020. SAGE have been recommending ventilation and filtration in schools for over a year and a half
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The UK has repeatedly been an outlier for similar reasons
Media gave a disproportionate sized platform to pro infection experts
Sweden started with an influenza plan, assuming there was no way to stop the spread. A small group had a disproportionate influence on policy. The similarities to the BMJ series on the UK’s response have so many striking similarities.
In August 2020 the UK government ignored SAGE after meeting with Tegnell, Heneghan, Gupta, Dingwall No circuit breakers, they tried to keep everything open, gaslighted us, and a lot of ppl died as a result
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Full strategy developed behind closed doors, never properly communicated to the public, Sweden continue with misleading information, talking points not followed up with action. "Doing all we can to..."
The report has a certain repetitiveness regarding asymptomatic spread, masks and schools. Also they downplayed scale of spread repeatedly while claiming herd immunity was close, which surely requires lots of infections?🤷♂️
How many press briefings have we seen in the UK where we couldn’t get straight answers, when the advisers diplomatically talked around the facts.
Lack of meaningful political opposition means that citizens cannot change the pandemic strategy through their voting choices at the next election
Intentional misinformation facilitated the spread of the virus, refusal to make changes to the influenza plan despite the evidence.
Authorities didn't trust the Public enough to be straight with the public. Recommendations makes legal protections more difficult
Consequence of letting it rip was increased inequality of social justice.
Sweden knew about the inequality, they blamed foreigners. How many UK pundits have been overly focused on weight in regards to covid?
In Sweden people were expected to take personal responsibility for their own risk, ignoring asymptomatic cases, if vulnerable people get sick its likely their fault.
Essentially the Swedish strategy is one which accommodates middle/upper class
That's the report, now a few extra considerations. Mid March Tegnell and UK were trying to persuade others to adopt herd immunity
From Italian ministers⬇️
There is a pre pandemic link with Tegnell and Giesecke to the UK, both studied at London school of tropical medicine, Whitty was also there
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UK was also in talks with Netherlands about Herd immunity in mid March
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🧵Netherlands Newly obtained documents from start of the pandemic shows political interference in the scientific advice to support a herd immunity strategy All here⬇️ Translation and additional info in rest of this threadNieuws: @MinVWS heeft in begin coronapandemie OMT-adviezen proberen aan te passen, en is daarin ook geslaagd. RIVM nam suggesties over, OMT zelf werd niet geraadpleegd. Gaat o.a. om specifiek toegevoegde zin die mondmaskers in ouderenzorg ontraadt. https://t.co/BwpXgrTyPAMilena Holdert @milenaholdert
44/ Once again the parallels with Netherlands and Sweden and UK are clear to see
Here's a thread like mine from a Dutch perspective
Summary of some of the similarities with the UK,
Lobbied other countries to embrace herd immunity
Preventing deaths was never a stated measure of success
Relied on a narrow group of experts and in house studies
Generally did not recognise international data and studies
Failure to answer FOIs
Confusion over airborne transmission, leading to lack of action on clean air and masks
Large scale care home deaths
Denied role of children in transmission
Data on infection in schools obscured