Thousands protest against reduction of medical insurance in Sweden

STOCKHOLM, Apr. 25, 2011 (Xinhua News Agency) — Thousands of people around Sweden on Monday took to the streets to protest against the government’s change of medical insurance policies, which kicked many people off the sickness list.

Teachers, pastors, social workers, doctors and nurses were among the thousands of demonstrators gathering in Stockholm, Lund, Gothenburg and some 30 other places around the country on the Easter holiday, to support those who are really sick but could not get the medical insurance, according to Swedish media reports.

Since the ruling Alliance government came to power in 2006, it has tightened sick insurance policies and forced about 100,000 people off the sick list, in a bid to make them go back to work.

Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt once said: “It is ridiculous that we are one of the richest countries in the world, but we are also the sickest.”

However, the reform was criticized by the Opposition, and also caused increasing public discontent.


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