Stockholm Pride is a little different this year: here’s what you need to know 

This week marks the beginning of Pride festivities in the Swedish capital. The tickets sold out immediately, for the partly in-person, partly digital events. 

Pride parade 2019
There won't be a Pride parade like the one in 2019 on the streets of Stockholm this year. Photo: Stina Stjernkvist/TT

You might have noticed rainbow flags popping up on major buildings in Stockholm, and on buses and trams. Sweden has more Pride festivals per capita than any other country and is the largest Pride celebration in the Nordic region, but the Stockholm event is by far the biggest.  

The Pride Parade, which usually attracts around 50,000 participants in a normal year, will be broadcast digitally from Södra Teatern on August 7th on Stockholm Pride’s website and social media. The two-hour broadcast will be led by tenor and debater Rickard Söderberg.

The two major venues of the festival are Pride House, located this year at the Clarion Hotel Stockholm at Skanstull in Södermalm, and Pride Stage, which is at Södra Teatern near Slussen.

“We are super happy with the layout and think it feels good for us as an organisation to slowly return to normal. There are so many who have longed for it,” chairperson of Stockholm Pride, Vix Herjeryd, told the Dagens Nyheter newspaper.

Tickets are required for all indoor events at Södra Teatern to limit the number of people indoors according to pandemic restrictions. But the entire stage programme will also be streamed on a big screen open air on Mosebacketerassen, which doesn’t require a ticket.  

You can read more about this year’s Pride programme on the Stockholm Pride website (in Swedish). 

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‘The situation is serious’: Stockholm health chief calls for private sector help

Stockholm's health authorities have made a new call for help, asking for private healthcare companies to free up staff to help solve a severe shortage in intensive care places.

'The situation is serious': Stockholm health chief calls for private sector help
Doctors and nurses have already been transferred from Astrid Lindgren's Children's hospital. Photo: Holger Ellgaard/Wikipedia Commons
Stockholm's health authorities have made a new call for help, asking for private healthcare companies to free up staff to help solve a severe shortage in intensive care places. 
“The situation is serious and we need help,” Björn Eriksson, the  region's health chief, told Sweden's TT newswire. “Around a third of healthcare in Stockholm is carried out in the private sector. It makes sense for them also to take responsibility.” 
Eriksson made headlines internationally on Wednesday when he warned that the region's intensive care units were at 99 percent capacity. 
On Friday he called the region's biggest private healthcare providers to a meeting, hoping to convince them to release staff to help out in the city's intensive care wards. 
“Give them time off and let them come and work for us,” he said. 
Even though there are currently only 80-90 coronavirus patients being treated in intensive care in Stockholm compared to a peak of 230 in the spring, there are many more patients with other conditions needing emergency treatment. 
“What we have now that we didn't have in the spring is that there are many people seeking other types of acute care. That went down completely for several weeks in the spring,” he said. 
Eriksson said that private healthcare providers had responded positively to his call, but he said it was still unclear how much the region might have to pay for the additional staff. 
“We are going to need as many as possible, so of course it's going to be pricey for us,” he said. “At first it's the region which pays the cost, but all extra costs connected to covid-19 will later on be reimbursed by the state.” 
On Friday evening Astrid Lindgren's children's hospital said it was seconding 120 medical staff to Karolinska University Hospital to support Covid care.