Swedish Epidemiologist Lays Out Sweden’s Thinking

This interview by Freddie Sayers of Professor Johan Giesecke, one of the world’s most senior epidemiologists, who is an advisor to the Swedish Government (he hired Anders Tegnell who is currently directing Sweden’s strategy), is worth 35 minutes of your lockdown viewing time. He lays out Sweden’s thinking

  • The flattening of the curve we are seeing now is due to the most vulnerable dying first as much as the lockdown
  • UK policy on lockdown and in other European countries is not evidence-based
  • The correct policy is to protect the old and the frail only
  • This will eventually lead to herd immunity as a “by-product”
  • The initial UK response, before the “180 degree U-turn”, was better
  • The Imperial College paper was “not very good” and he has never seen an unpublished, non-peer-reviewed paper have so much policy impact
  • Is dismissive of the 510,000 figure that was predicted if mitigation measures were not implemented
  • The Imperial College paper was much too pessimistic and did not factor in the now much increased ICU capacity
  • Any such models are a dubious basis for public policy anyway, taking no account of real world specifics
  • The results will eventually be similar for all countries
  • Covid-19 is a “mild disease” and similar to the flu, and it was the novelty of the disease that scared people.
  • The actual fatality rate of Covid-19 will in all likelihood turn out to be in the region of 0.1%
  • At least 50% of the population of both the UK and Sweden will likely be shown to have already had the disease when mass antibody testing becomes available

His Swedish blunt logic is not an eccentricity, he was the first Chief Scientist of the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, and an advisor to the director general of the WHO. Guido increasingly thinks we need to move towards “climbing down the rungs” of lockdown. This eminent epidemiologist makes a convincing case that this 3 week extension should be the last unless and until there is a second wave…

Hat-tip: Unherd: Swedish expert: why lockdowns are the wrong policy

mdi-tag-outline Coronavirus UnHerd
mdi-account-multiple-outline Freddie Sayers Johan Giesecke
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