Most vaccines are commercially available in Sweden. There are two vaccine clinics at the nearest big mall to where I live. Two months ago, on 5 December, I mused on Facebook, “Wonder when covid-19 vaccination will become commercially available in Sweden and what the price will be at first.”
This question met with really strong reactions. People accused me of having no solidarity with the sick and elderly, of being a bad Social Democrat, of undermining social healthcare. But I wasn’t suggesting that the vaccine doses secured by the EU from certain manufacturers should be taken out of that system and sold on the open market. Additional manufacturers will pop up, eager to market their products. And taking a vaccine is not like paying to get good cancer treatment for yourself while someone poor dies. Me getting vaccinated benefits the entire herd’s health, not just mine. And if I pay for vaccination outside of the social healthcare system, then that system saves some money.
Anyway, Expressen reported on 28 January that covid-19 vaccination is now sort of available in Sweden, or more exactly, on the Swedish market. And it costs a bit less than SEK 1 million = U$D 120,000 = € 99,000 for two shots. Pricey? Yes, but it includes airfare to Dubai, the UAE, India or Morocco plus luxury accommodation and meals for two weeks. So the market has spoken: if you pay more than $120,000 for two covid-19 shots today, you are not getting a good price.
Swedish social healthcare expects to offer people like me the vaccine for free in April or May. If I can get it legally and locally for less than $120 prior to that date, I believe I’ll go for it. Watch this space.