While Sweden had received the headlines for not introducing childbirth or wearing a mask, the country is now being criticized for its leadership of the Covid-19 pandemic. People wonder if the authorities have taken the necessary measures to protect the elderly, whose families accuse the government of letting them die. Report from our special envoys.
“He was like my father, my uncle has always been there for me. That’s why I am fighting for him today,” Juliana Jihem explains to France 24. Her uncle, Moïse, who suffered from dementia, died of coronavirus in a nursing home at 72 years of age.
His family filed a complaint because, according to them, he would not have received the care that would have enabled him to survive. “We called his uncle on FaceTime and you could see that the medical staff behind him were not wearing masks or gloves,” said Peter Jihem, Juliana’s husband.
“I have the impression that they sacrificed the elderly, and this is unacceptable, because everyone should have had a chance to survive,” the latter concludes.
In Sweden, the Covid-19 pandemic has killed 5,800 people, half of them in nursing homes.
Swedish authorities say that the protocols were followed, but some recognized doctors do not hesitate to criticize the government’s strategy. “They did not even try to save the elderly,” says Anders Vahlne, virologist at Karolinska Institutet. “They were so afraid that the intensive care units would be overwhelmed, that they could not save young people who were seriously ill. I think they were too difficult to choose patients.”
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