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COVID-19 STATS

More than 100 Covid patients in Swedish intensive care units

The number of patients receiving intensive care for Covid-19 continued to rise in Sweden over Christmas and has now passed 100, new figures show.

More than 100 Covid patients in Swedish intensive care units
File photo of an intensive care team in Sweden in 2020. Photo: Staffan Löwstedt/SvD/TT

According to Sweden’s Intensive Care Register, 102 Covid-19 patients were being treated in intensive care in the country on Tuesday.

Swedish news agency TT reports that this is a 15 percent increase on last week and the highest number since mid-June. However, largely thanks to vaccinations it it a lower number than last December, when more than 330 Covid patients were in intensive care around this time.

The patients’ median age is 63. TT reports that eight out of ten have an underlying risk factor, such as a chronic illness, and almost six out of ten (58 percent) are completely unvaccinated.

Sweden’s Public Health Agency on Tuesday published the first data since before the Christmas holidays on new confirmed Covid-19 infections. According to that, 1,294,560 people have so far tested positive, up from 1,273,313 confirmed cases by December 23rd.

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THE LOCAL

The Local’s paywall-free Covid blog is coming to an end

After two years, it's time for us to bid farewell to The Local's paywall-free Covid blog. But we'll continue to cover the pandemic in other articles.

The Local's paywall-free Covid blog is coming to an end

In March 2020, just a day before the World Health Organization declared that the spread of the new coronavirus was now a pandemic, we published The Local’s free Covid blog.

At the time it was not much more than a short timeline of the outbreak in Sweden up until that point. But since then, it’s been one of our most important articles.

In the past two years, the blog has been read more than a million times, and it’s been the most-read article on the site almost every day. Despite being completely free to read, it has also been the most-read article among paying members – thank you for your feedback and support, it’s been invaluable.

We’ve kept the blog updated almost every weekday for the past two years, while also producing other, more in-depth, articles on everything from Covid vaccine passes, opinion pieces and our own readers’ stories about the issues you told us affected you.

Most of the blog updates have been done by myself or Catherine Edwards, followed by her successor Becky Waterton from October 2021. That’s not a huge team, so we’re grateful that our community of members of The Local makes our newsroom feel much bigger.

We started the blog mainly to keep readers informed about new infections and changes to restrictions, recommendations and testing rules.

But we’ve reached a new stage of the pandemic, and it feels like the blog has served its purpose.

Nearly all restrictions and guidelines have been lifted, data on new infections is harder to come by since Sweden stopped testing the general public on February 9th, and today the Coronavirus Commission set up to investigate Sweden’s pandemic response presented its final report. We’ve written about it here.

Today will also be the last time we update the blog. But the pandemic itself, its impact on people, and The Local’s coverage, are not over. Loved ones are still falling ill and dying, vaccinations are still vitally important, and Sweden’s non-EU entry restrictions are still in place until March 31st.

We’ll continue to cover all of those things in other articles. If you want an email alert every time we publish a major Covid-19 story, make sure to update your newsletter preferences here.

It’s now time for us to focus our resources on those articles, as well as continuing to investigate other issues that affect foreign residents’ lives in Sweden. With Russia’s war in Ukraine, Sweden’s upcoming election in September, and potential changes to Sweden’s migration laws, there’s no shortage of such issues.

This is my last day at The Local before I go on parental leave. Our correspondent Richard Orange will take over as editor while I’m gone. You’re always welcome to get in touch with him and Becky Waterton at [email protected] if you have any questions about life in Sweden, or any stories you think they should cover.

As always, thanks for reading,

Emma

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