Covid-19: Record-high case numbers and Swedish school closures

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Covid-19: Record-high case numbers and Swedish school closures
The Västra Götaland region has reported record-high numbers of PCR tests and record-high positive cases of Covid-19 in the past week. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

The region of Västra Götaland - where Gothenburg, Sweden's second largest city, is located - reported 44,791 positive cases of Covid-19 last week, the highest number in a single week since the pandemic began.


Västra Götaland also reported the highest number of PCR tests taken in a single week during the pandemic, 130,554 tests. Many in the region have experienced delays in booking tests and receiving results, meaning that there are probably even more infections than reported, the region said in a press statement.

Across the country, almost 140,000 new cases of Covid-19 have been reported since last Thursday. Last week, the Public Health Agency altered testing recommendations for regions, meaning that many regions no longer offer free PCR testing for the public. This has led many individuals to take at-home antigen tests, which are not registered in official figures.

In Stockholm region, 22 percent of school teachers were absent last week due to illness or quarantine, and five schools are closed, with more to come, newspaper DN reports.

So far this year, the city have introduced distance learning at 28 of the city's 146 schools due to high absence or infection.

"Currently, it's above all about staff absence. Until now we've only needed distance learning partly in some schools, in certain classes or year groups, and the decisions to do so only last a few days," Teddy Söderberg, one of Stockholm's primary school heads told DN.


Absences vary between different areas of the city, schools and year groups, as well as among staff groups and student groups. In some schools there have even been issues with school catering.

"We managed to solve one urgent issue by transporting cooked food from one school to another. It's exhausting getting everything to work. We have a lot of employees doing a fantastic job now and a lot of coordinated efforts have meant we can hold our heads above water in this difficult situation," Söderberg told DN.

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