New Swedish Covid-19 guidelines from November: no tests for double vaccinated

Vaccine bottles being filled
New recommendations may reduce time at home for double-vaccinated. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT
The Swedish Public Health Agency has announced a change in the Covid-19 guidelines. From November 1st, fully vaccinated individuals will no longer be required to take a Covid-19 test before returning to work after they recover – with a few exceptions.

The new guidelines also apply to people who have recently been infected with Covid-19 and children under six.

“You should feel better and back to your normal self, even if you still have some respiratory symptoms. For most people this means you should stay at home for at least a few days, but often up to a week” said Karin Tegmark Wisell, deputy state epidemiologist at the Public Health Agency, at a press conference.

Although tests are no longer required for these people, the Public Health Agency still recommends that people with symptoms of respiratory infections stay at home until they feel better, returning to work, school or preschool once they have been fever-free for at least 24 hours. This is also to help avoid spreading other respiratory illnesses such as RSV virus (a common winter virus mainly affecting children) and influenza.

Unvaccinated individuals should follow previous recommendations to take a Covid-19 test and stay at home while waiting for an answer if experiencing symptoms.

The recommendation to take a Covid-19 test and stay at home while waiting for an answer if experiencing respiratory symptoms also still applies to healthcare and care home workers, those working with the elderly, elderly people receiving at-home care, and people receiving treatment for suspected Covid-19.

People who know or suspect that they may have been infected should also still follow recommendations to get tested – even if they are fully vaccinated.

The Public Health Agency stated that the new measures were due to the level of vaccination coverage in Sweden, which is said had lowered the risk of serious consequences of Covid-19, as well as the risk of spreading the virus.

As of Thursday, 84.4 percent of Sweden’s over-16 population had had one dose, and 79.4 percent two doses.


Member comments

  1. “People who know or suspect that they may have been infected should also still follow recommendations to get tested – even if they are fully vaccinated.”
    This is confusing – so if you have been in close contact with somebody who did get the virus, you should get tested (even if you’ve been vaccinated?)

    Then is the no tests necessary for vaccinated people only for those who get cold like symptoms without any clear contagion route?
    I’m not sure why they keep the quoted recommendation. It’s just even more confusing.

    1. Hi, yes, that is also our understanding. Fully vaccinated people who develop symptoms in general don’t have to get tested according to the new recommendations (but should still stay at home), but fully vaccinated people who know they have been exposed to the virus (for example if they’ve been in close contact with someone with confirmed Covid or have been contacted by contact tracers) should still get tested.

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