The pandemic is likely to have peaked in Finland, but the patient load in hospitals is slowly declining, health authorities say

The pandemic is likely to have peaked in Finland, but the patient load in hospitals is slowly declining, health authorities say

The number of coronavirus infections in Finland has fallen for the third week in a row, officials from the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health and the National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) said at a weekly press conference on Thursday.

Although the number of new laboratory-confirmed infections has decreased in all age groups and regions, there are still many patients in need of hospitalization.

The hospital patient load is slowly declining due to the number of elderly patients and the decline in overall vaccination coverage.

Slow reception of the second booster

"We have taken this into account in the booster recommendation. The fourth strokes are very important for those for whom it is recommended, [but] less than half of them have taken it so far," said Liisa-Maria Voipio-PulkkiDirector of Strategic Affairs at the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health.

About a month ago, THL recommended a fourth dose of the vaccine for people over the age of 80, as well as for residents of nursing homes.

The burden of specialist care is at its peak, while the need for intensive care has also declined since March, authorities say.

In contrast, the decline in the number of patients in primary care has been slower.

"This is because infections are more concentrated in the elderly population and we still have some cases of nursing homes," explained Voipio-Pulkki.

Mortality is at an all-time low

According to figures released on Wednesday, there were 285 patients in the specialty wards and 28 in the intensive care unit. There were 505 patients in primary care wards, more than half of whom were mainly due to Covid.

"Intensive care is required for just over 1 patient in 1,000 infections," said Mika SalminenDirector of THL’s Health Security Department.

The proportion of deaths in confirmed Covid cases is also at its lowest level since the pandemic struck Finland more than two years ago.

RNA levels in wastewater remain high

In the meantime, wastewater samples are still rich in coronavirus, but levels have not risen.

The amount of coronavirus in wastewater has remained stable for several weeks.

In Joensuu, Lappeenranta, Pori and Vaasa, wastewater levels began to fall last week. At other monitoring sites, volumes remained consistently high.

Coronavirus RNA is known to be excreted in wastewater for an average of three weeks after infection.

On Thursday, Finland reported its one million laboratory-confirmed case of Covid-19 since the end of January 2020, when the first case was reported to a Chinese tourist in Lapland.

Source: The Nordic Page

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