Sweden’s Relaxed Approach to the Coronavirus Could Already Be Backfiring

As many public spaces throughout Europe empty out—with citizens only leaving home for essential groceries or medication—life in Sweden is carrying on, mostly as usual.

The problem with Sweden’s approach to avoid social distancing and other restrictions is already taking a toll. In a country of only 10 million people, there are 9,141 confirmed cases and 793 people have died as of April 9. Disease experts fear that this number will rise rapidly.

Sweden isn’t the only country to delay more serious public health measures. Both Japan and Russia have only recently decided to implement stricter measures in the face of their own coronavirus epidemics.