Tegnell told The Daily Show's Trevor Noah (scroll down to watch the video) that accepting a higher death toll initially if it meant a better result in the long run was never part of Sweden's strategy when it came to fighting the novel coronavirus.
“We calculated on more people being sick, but the death toll really came as a surprise to us,” he said. “We really thought our elderly homes would be much better at keeping this disease outside of them then they have actually been.
“Not that Sweden is the only country with this problem, many countries in Europe have problems with elderly homes. It's very difficult to keep the disease away from there. Even if we are doing our best, it's obviously not enough.
“We are not putting anybody's lives above everybody else's lives, that's not the way we're working.”
Watch the full interview below: