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Article

Social Distancing Policies in the Coronavirus Battle: A Comparison of Denmark and Sweden

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Department of Behavioral Science and Learning, Linköping University, SE 581 83 Linköping, Sweden
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Department of Clinical Research, Copenhagen University Hospital—Amager and Hvidovre, DK-2650 Hvidovre, Denmark
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Department of Public Health, Nursing, Aarhus University, DK-8000 Aarhus, Denmark
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Department of Clinical Medicine, University of Copenhagen, DK-2200 Copenhagen, Denmark
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National Institute of Public Health, University of Southern Denmark, DK-1455 Copenhagen, Denmark
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Institute for Housing and Urban Research (IBF), Uppsala University, SE 751 20 Uppsala, Sweden
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Department of Government, Uppsala University, SE 751 20 Uppsala, Sweden
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Department of Public Health, University of Copenhagen, DK-1353 Copenhagen, Denmark
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Department of Political Science, University of Copenhagen, DK-1353 Copenhagen, Denmark
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Department of Health, Medicine and Caring Sciences, Linköping University, SE 581 83 Linköping, Sweden
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Riccardo Polosa, Pietro Ferrara, Luciana Albano and Venera Tomaselli
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(20), 10990; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182010990
Received: 10 September 2021 / Revised: 13 October 2021 / Accepted: 14 October 2021 / Published: 19 October 2021
Social distancing measures have been a key component in government strategies to mitigate COVID-19 globally. Based on official documents, this study aimed to identify, compare and analyse public social distancing policy measures adopted in Denmark and Sweden regarding the coronavirus from 1 March 2020 until 1 October 2020. A key difference was the greater emphasis on laws and executive orders (sticks) in Denmark, which allowed the country to adopt many stricter policy measures than Sweden, which relied mostly on general guidelines and recommendations (sermons). The main policy adopters in Denmark were the government and the Danish Parliament, whereas the Public Health Agency issued most policies in Sweden, reflecting a difference in political governance and administrative structure in the two countries. During the study period, Sweden had noticeably higher rates of COVID-19 deaths and hospitalizations per 100,000 population than Denmark, yet it is difficult to determine the impact or relative effectiveness of sermons and sticks, particularly with regard to broader and longer-term health, economic and societal effects. View Full-Text
Keywords: policy measures; social distancing; laws; executive orders; recommendations; comparative research; document analysis policy measures; social distancing; laws; executive orders; recommendations; comparative research; document analysis
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MDPI and ACS Style

Seing, I.; Thórný Stefánsdóttir, N.; Wassar Kirk, J.; Andersen, O.; Tjørnhøj-Thomsen, T.; Kallemose, T.; Vedung, E.; Vrangbæk, K.; Nilsen, P. Social Distancing Policies in the Coronavirus Battle: A Comparison of Denmark and Sweden. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 10990. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182010990

AMA Style

Seing I, Thórný Stefánsdóttir N, Wassar Kirk J, Andersen O, Tjørnhøj-Thomsen T, Kallemose T, Vedung E, Vrangbæk K, Nilsen P. Social Distancing Policies in the Coronavirus Battle: A Comparison of Denmark and Sweden. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(20):10990. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182010990

Chicago/Turabian Style

Seing, Ida, Nina Thórný Stefánsdóttir, Jeanette Wassar Kirk, Ove Andersen, Tine Tjørnhøj-Thomsen, Thomas Kallemose, Evert Vedung, Karsten Vrangbæk, and Per Nilsen. 2021. "Social Distancing Policies in the Coronavirus Battle: A Comparison of Denmark and Sweden" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 18, no. 20: 10990. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182010990

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