The coronavirus epidemic is in an accelerating phase in the area of Helsinki University Hospital (HUS) Mika Salminen, Director of Health Security at the Department of Health and Welfare (THL).
Salminen and Head of THL’s Infectious Diseases Unit Taneli Puumalainen, held a press conference on the coronavirus situation in Finland on Tuesday and announced that 149 new cases of coronavirus had been registered in the country since the previous day.
About half of these new cases were detected in the HUS area, which includes the country’s capital Helsinki and the surrounding Uusimaa region.
Salminen said the epidemic was currently in an accelerating phase, noting that preventive action must be taken, and urging citizens to follow the authorities ’recommendations.
"We now have to make regional decisions," Salminen said and added that people in the Helsinki metropolitan area should wear more face shields than they have used before.
"The threshold of the face mask should be low," he said.
The proportion of younger adults (20–29 years) positive for the Covid-19 test is higher than in the spring, in part because more coronavirus testing is performed. However, a similar trend can be seen in Europe, according to Salminen.
"The disease is still dangerous and you should take it seriously regardless of age," he warned.
Puumalainen said it was time to investigate situations and events where infection clusters occur. He said attending nightclubs and parties is risky, suggesting that student parties can be held remotely.
However, Puumalainen said that the most important cornerstones in fighting the epidemic are testing, quarantine and treatment.
He said that in the future, restrictions and guidelines need to be addressed regionally, but if local measures are not enough, it may be decided to implement national restrictions.
According to THL, the number of new coronavirus cases has increased significantly in Finland recently. This week, there are 20 new cases per 100,000 inhabitants in Finland in the last two weeks, which has doubled the number in recent weeks.
Because of this development, THL updated its recommendation on the use of face masks last week.
In areas where the epidemic is in an accelerating phase, the Institute recommends the use of face shields not only in places such as public transportation but also indoors and in situations where close contact with others cannot be avoided.
The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health is expected on Tuesday to impose restrictions on shortening the opening hours of bars and nightclubs to curb the spread of the disease.
The ministry is also expected to impose regional restrictions on areas with increased levels of infection.
Source: The Nordic Page