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Dealing With COVID-19 Pandemic: Sweden vs US Essay

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Updated: Feb 13th, 2022

An unexpected outbreak of the COVID-19 led to a global pandemic, putting millions of people around the world at risk of contamination. Regardless of the level of economic development, most states affected faced challenges in accommodating the needs of patients suffering from the virus due to the limited capacity and low preparedness of their healthcare system. In an effort to flatten the curve, Sweden avoided severe quarantine measures while US imposed strict regulations on traveling, working, and studying in public places.

Sweden’s way of handling the COVID-19 pandemic is controversial and raises concerns of the international community. Since the outbreak of the virus and up till the day this essay is submitted, Sweden did not put its residents on lock-down (Brabant). Despite the condemn of the global leaders and apprehension of the World Health Organization, the number of cases in the country rounded at 11, 000, according to “COVID-19 Coronavirus Pandemic.” Young individuals with no chronic health conditions are allowed to visit public places and work from their offices (Brabant). Kindergartens, schools, and restaurants remain open as local authorities rely on the national social responsibility as the main tool of combatting the virus (Brabant). However, what is more surprising is that the Nordic state did not close borders, allowing its residents to enter and exit the country as needed.

Though unusual, Swedish strategy is built based on the recommendations of the scientists rather than political decisions. In an effort to protect the vulnerable population, Swedish government strives to expose healthy people to the virus, so that they can develop antibodies, strengthening their immune system (Brabant). While the entire world is on quarantine, Swedish market is open for business, trade, and investments. The question whether such exclusive decision turns to be effective in the long-term run is yet to be answered.

Unlike Sweden, US imposed much higher restrictions to flatten the curve and prevent the virus from spreading locally. The country banned entry for all Chinese citizens when the pandemic started in China, followed by 30-day prohibition for entry for the residents of Schengen area with a mere exception for UK (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). The government announced national quarantine when the number of cases began growing in the US, allowing states to make individual alternations based on the situational condition (CDC). In contrast to Scandinavians, Americans are on a month-long lock-down with businesses temporarily closing down or transitioning to the new remote format of work.

All public places, including educational institutions, recreational centers, and restaurants, are closed until further notice. Grocery shops and pharmacies remain open to meet the immediate needs of American residents (CDC). Though encouraged by the government and promoted by the healthcare providers, social distancing is still heavily overlooked by common people. As the number of cases already exceeded half a million cases, according to “COVID-19 Coronavirus Pandemic,” public concern for the future of the nation’s physical, emotional, and financial wellness raises.

In conclusion, Sweden chose a controversial strategy, using minimum restrictions and avoiding standard quarantine measures enforced worldwide. Unlike the Nordic country, US put strict bans on social gatherings, limiting usual operation of businesses, schools, and workplaces. For now, it is too early to evaluate the effectiveness of the methods utilized by each of the country as the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 continue to grow.

Works Cited

Brabant, Malcolm. PBS, 2020. Web.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Coronavirus (COVID-19). CDC, 2020. Web.

Worldometer, 2020. Web.

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IvyPanda. 2022. "Dealing With COVID-19 Pandemic: Sweden vs US." February 13, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/dealing-with-covid-19-pandemic-sweden-vs-us/.

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