Swedish Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson has tested positive for Covid-19, according to information issued by her spokesperson on Friday, as a growing wave of infections swept the country driven by the Omicron variant, considered more contagious.
Andersson, 54, is one of several party leaders to test positive for the SARS-CoV-2 virus following a debate in Parliament earlier this week, while the King, Queen and Crown Princess of Sweden were affected by infections this month.
The Nordic country has repeatedly set new daily records for Covid-19 cases this month amid a growing fourth wave of the virus, increasing pressure on the health system and prompting the reimposition of many restrictions.
“She (Andersson) is following current recommendations and will carry out her duties from home. The Prime Minister feels good, given the situation,” the Swedish government spokesman said.
Sweden hit a new daily record for Covid-19 cases on Thursday. Health authorities expect the numbers to continue rising rapidly over the next two weeks before peaking in late January, the country’s health agency said on Thursday.
The number of new cases reached 25,215 the day before amid a surge in the Omicron variant. The Public Health Agency warned that figure could more than double by the end of the month in a worst-case scenario.
“Calculations in the updated scenarios from the Health Agency show a massive increase in the spread of infection for another two weeks, with a peak in late January,” the Health Agency said in a statement on Thursday.
In the worst case, Sweden could see about 69,000 daily cases at its peak, the office said.
While Covid-19 infections have spiked, the number of people hospitalized with the disease remains well below peaks from previous waves. The number of new deaths has also been comparatively low.
Sweden recently tightened its restrictions and has urged people to work from home in an effort to minimize the spread of the virus.