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Excess mortality declining in Sweden

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Excess mortality in Sweden continues to decline after the peak in mid-April, according to Statistics Sweden’s preliminary weekly statistics. However, differences in mortality rates around the country are still large.

The preliminary statistics have now been updated up to and including 8 May. At national level, the peak is still week 15 (ending 12 April), in which the number of deaths has now been adjusted to 2 554. That is the highest number of deaths registered in a week during the entire 2000s.

Statistics Sweden compares the preliminary statistics on deaths with the average for corresponding periods in 2015–2019. Levels that are higher than the average are known as excess mortality.

Since the peak in week 15, excess mortality weekly rates have declined at the national level.

“The drop is noticeable in Stockholm County. However, excess mortality remains high there. In week 18, excess mortality in the counties of Stockholm and Östergötland was above 50 percent compared with 2015–2019,” says Linus Garp, statistician at Statistics Sweden’s Population and Economic Welfare unit.

Up to week 18, excess mortality was highest among men 80–89 years, followed by men 90 years and older.

There are still major regional differences in Sweden. Some counties, such as Kronoberg and Kalmar, have not noted any excess mortality rates at all.

At the municipal level, excess mortality in April, compared with 2015–2019, was highest in Borlänge, followed by Sollentuna and Sundbyberg. The mortality rate was three times higher than the average in 2015–2019.

In the Excel file, these statistics are also presented by region and municipality, and by sex and age.

Facts: Preliminary statistics

Statistics Sweden’s preliminary statistics on deaths have been produced to provide rapid access to developments during the coronavirus outbreak, and to enable comparison with previous years. The statistics are reported on Mondays and should be regarded as raw data. These statistics are updated as new data is made available, as there is a lag in reporting, in particular for the days closest to publication.

Statistics from two weeks ago are not expected to change substantially. Previous years’ statistics are based on Statistics Sweden’s final observation register. Only persons whose date of death is known are included in the above calculations.

These statistics do not list the cause of death, but rather present the number of deaths among people registered in the population in Sweden.


Preliminary statistics on deaths (Excel file)

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Linus Garp

+46 10 479 66 56

Johannes Cleris, Press officer

+46 72 084 40 83