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Today in Sweden: A round-up of the latest news on Friday

Find out what's going on in Sweden today with The Local's short round-up of the news in less than five minutes.

Today in Sweden: A round-up of the latest news on Friday
Snowfall on the E18 highway on Thursday. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

Sweden puts brakes on lifting of coronavirus restrictions

Sweden has for the second time put on hold plans to ease some coronavirus restrictions, which would allow theme parks to reopen and some seated events to host more than eight people.

The rules were first set to change on April 11th, postponed to May 3rd, and now the government has at the request of the Public Health Agency pushed that back to May 17th, with the caveat it may be further postponed if the Covid-19 infection continues to spread at a high rate.

The delay is because of the high burden on healthcare, with some regions having reached their maximum capacity in intensive care, and the continued high spread of the virus as the 14-day incidence rate came close to 800 new cases per 100,000 residents.

Swedish vocabulary: theme park – nöjespark

2 million adults have received a Covid-19 vaccine dose in Sweden

Sweden passed a milestone on Thursday, announcing that almost one in four adults in the country have now received their first Covid-19 vaccine dose.

Around half of Sweden’s regions are currently in Phase 3 of the four-stage vaccination programme, meaning the vaccine is offered to all adults over 60 as well as others in certain risk groups.

Swedish vocabulary: milestone – milstolpe

Four people catch Covid-19 at a care home despite full vaccination

Four residents of a care home for the elderly have fallen ill from Covid-19 even after receiving two doses of the Covid-19 vaccine, SVT Sörmland reports. 

But despite being in a group vulnerable to serious illness from the virus, the care home residents all had mild symptoms and were feeling well, the municipality said.

“It is above all unusual that you get seriously ill [from Covid-19 after full vaccination. You usually get milder symptoms if you do catch the virus, but you should be aware if you get symptoms that could be Covid,” the regional vaccine coordinator told SVT.

In the Public Health Agency’s first report into the issue, at the end of March 0.06 percent of fully vaccinated people had tested positive for the virus more than two weeks after their second dose.

Swedish vocabulary: fully vaccinated – fullvaccinerad

Level of unionisation rises for first time since the 1990s

In a break with the trend, several unions representing white and blue collar workers have reported growth in the last year.

A report from think tank Arena idé showed that the rate of union membership rose by one percentage point to 69 percent last year, as Sveriges Radio was first to report. Arena’s report said that the uncertainty on the labour market caused by the pandemic was a likely reason for the change.

In Sweden, unions not only assist with any disputes or negotiations between employer and employee, but also offer a range of other support. This typically includes subsidies for training, advice on salary negotiations, increased unemployment insurance, and even discounts on things like mortgages and insurance. 

Swedish vocabulary: trade union – fackförbund

Swedish vaccine pass to be ready by June 1st

Sweden’s digital vaccine pass is expected to be developed on target by June 1st, but may not be used immediately. As The Local has previously reported, the government asked the Agency for Digital Administration to develop the pass before summer.

Across the EU, the current plan is to use certificates of vaccination to ease international travel from June 26th, but it is not yet clear if Sweden will use its pass domestically before then. The certificates will state whether the person has been vaccinated, as well as their test results for Covid-19.

In neigbouring Denmark meanwhile, the passes have already been launched and are being used by customers to go to hairdressers, restaurants and other businesses.

Swedish vocabulary: vaccine pass/certificate – vaccinpass/vaccinbevis

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