Coronavirus epidemic in 2021
On this page you will find updated information on the coronavirus and the epidemic from the perspective of the Hospital District of Southwest Finland. The page also contains
instructions for applying for the corona test, information on
visits to Tyks hospitals, and links to the district municipalities' own corona pages.
Situation in the Hospital District of Southwest Finland
Updated 14 April 2021
Southwest Finland is still in the spreading phase of the coronavirus epidemic. However, the situation with infections has improved.
The incidence rate per one hundred thousand inhabitants in Southwest Finland is now 136,1 in the two-week follow-up period. In the previous follow-up period it was 194,7.
The share of positives among those tested was 4.5 percent in the most recent 14-day period. Of the cases reported during last week, the source of the infection is known in 72 percent of cases.
Tuesday 13 April the corona prevention group recommends that
outdoor group exercise for those born in 2001 and younger people be allowed, but close contact exercises would not yet be allowed. Next week, the group will assess whether indoor hobbies can also be allowed for those under 20 years of age.
The corona prevention group continued all previous recommendations until 25 April 2021.
You can follow the corona virus situation on the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare's (THL) website.
The Hospital District delivers the majority of vaccines upon arrival to the municipalities in southwest Finland, which are responsible for performing the vaccinations. In southwest Finland, the number of vaccine doses distributed to the municipalities
according to nationally defined criteria.
Vaccinations are given in accordance with the Government decree and THL's draft vaccination schedule. The data of the vaccinations given are reported compiledly in the Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) vaccination register, which also shows the progress of vaccinations in Southwest Finland.
information about vaccines and coronavirus (THL).
Recommendations for Southwest Finland
All recommendations are valid in all of Southwest Finland
until 25 April 2021.
In addition, the Regional State Administrative Agency of Southwest Finland has made the following decisions:
- The recommendation for working remotely is valid in Southwest Finland for the time being in accordance with the Government's decision-in-principle (15 October).
- In the workplace, working remotely is recommended where work tasks allow and actual work arrangements are promoted to reduce close contacts and other risk factors.
- The employer makes the decision of switching to working remotely.
Face masks and safety gaps
- Face masks are recommended in the hospital district of Southwest Finland in accordance with instructions by Ministry of Social affairs and Health (STM) and Institute for Health and Welfare (THL). (See THL's recommendation.)
- New modified coronavirus variants infect and spread faster than the previous coronavirus variant. Therefore,
THL recommends a safety distance of more than two meters to other people.
- At schools and early childhood education:
Teaching staff in comprehensive education and in school-based pre-primary education are recommended to wear face masks or alternatively a full face visor. It is recommended that those working with the youngest children use protective equipment whenever possible.
- In primary schools grades 6 are recommended to wear masks according to the national recommendation.
- In primary schools grades 4–5 are recommended to wear masks if the local epidemiological situation so requires.
- Naturally, the municipalities have a margin of discretion according to the regional situation.
- It is also recommended to wear a mask for outdoor events.
- In all customer service situations, staff should wear a mask, including outdoors.
- The corona coordination group recommends that all municipalities follow the mask requirement in public transport and school transport in their area. The group believes that the mask should be used on school rides regardless of the age of the children.
See also from Föli's website what changes does the coronavirus cause in Turku region traffic and other services.
Protecting the elderly and at-risk groups
According to THL's instructions.
- In 24-hour care units it must be emphasized that the elderly and at-risk groups have the right to meet their loved one.
- Special attention should be paid to hygiene instructions, safety gaps and the use of masks.
- There can be a maximum of two visitors per resident at a time. Visitors should wear a face mask. Events and gatherings should not be organized.
- Efforts must be made to emphasize e.g. the fact that, in this epidemic situation, the number of people for private events must be taken into account when visiting a person covered by care services, and hygiene instructions and safety gaps should be taken into account.
- When people from risk groups visit in private homes, recommendations on restrictions on the number of people at private events should be taken into account.
Organization of teaching
Universities and colleges
- In universities and colleges, distance learning is recommended.
- If necessary, a hybrid model alternating between distance and contact education can be considered so that the necessary education can be implemented as contact education.
- A group size of up to six people is recommended for contact education.
- Test situations must be arranged in a corona-safe manner, for which no separate recommended maximum number of persons is given.
Secondary education (upper secondary school and vocational education):
- It is recommended to continue distance education until 11 April 2021. The municipalities will make the decision on continuing distance education. From 12 April 2021, municipalities may, at their discretion, switch to a hybrid model or, if the local epidemiological situation allows, to contact teaching.
- The necessary education can be implemented as contact education.
- Municipalities have been given separate instructions on the health-safe organization of matriculation exam. It is possible for the municipalities to allow students who have been placed in quarantine to participate in matriculation exam by strict arrangements. The premise is that the student must present as fresh negative corona test result as possible and must not have any symptoms of infection. The municipalities make a decision on how matriculation exams would in practice be arranged in quarantine cases.
- Grades 1-6 can continue contact education.
It is recommended to continue distance education in grades 7-9 until 11 April 2021. The municipalities will make the decision on continuing distance education. From 12 April 2021, municipalities may, at their discretion, switch to a hybrid model or, if the local epidemiological situation allows, to contact teaching.
Pre-primary education (school-based) and early childhood education:
- Care must be taken to ensure that there are no contacts between the various groups.
Recommendations for face masks are presented under Face masks and safety gaps.
More about public spaces in Turku, hobbies and the organization of teaching.
Regarding the closure of public and private premises, the prevention group recommends:
Libraries should be organized in such a way that safety gaps can be maintained. Libraries offer a limited service, such as short-term lending for a limited number of visitors and the use of public computers for essential transactions. Reading rooms will be closed and events agreed in libraries will be cancelled or carried out remotely. If this is not possible, libraries should be closed.
Youth facilities may be open if those doing so can maintain adequate safety gaps. The activities of youth facilities will be reduced, ie not cooking, for example, but the opportunity to be in a safe place will be offered. At the same time, one provides information to young people about the coronavirus and how to apply for a test, and supports endurance. If this is not possible, youth centers should be closed. The use of a face mask in youth facilities is especially recommended for young people of upper school age and older. The number of people allowed on the premises may be considered locally depending on the size of the premises and other conditions.
- The number of clients in
cultural facilities and
museums must be strictly limited so that they correspond to the AVI's limit on the number of people at indoor public events. If this is not possible, cultural facilities and museums should be closed.
Vocational and civic colleges, basic art education for adults is still implemented as distance learning.
Indoor playgrounds are kept closed.
The lounges of the shopping centers are kept closed to avoid stays.
It is recommended that private operators take similar action.
- Regional State Administrative Agency has limited the number of people for
outdoor public events to a maximum of six people (until April 26, 2021).
On AVI's website (in Finnish) you can find answers to frequently asked questions.
- It is recommended that all gatherings of more than six people be restricted from 27 February 2021.
Regarding the restrictions on hobbies, the prevention group recommends:
- Outdoor sports venues can be kept open for voluntary movement.
- Hobbies for children and young people can continue as described below without close contact and taking into account safety distances and other corona measures:
- All indoor group hobby activities for adults are still considered suspended. The break for adult team sports and contact and martial arts continues accordingly.
- It is recommended to avoid group hobby activities for adults outdoors as well
- However, training and competition opportunities for competitive and elite sports are secured for professional sports based on a license agreement or sports agreement, as defined by the Ministry of Education, national team activities, Olympic Committee support athletes and OKM scholarship athletes.
- It is still recommended to avoid choral singing.
It is recommended that private operators take similar action.
Any unnecessary travelling should be avoided.
Visiting the hospital during the coronavirus epidemic
Visits to patients in treatment will be prohibited from 17.12.2020. The ban applies to all hospitals at Turku University Hospital (Tyks) with the following exceptions:
- psychiatric hospital
- palliative care units, and
- pediatric ward and maternity support persons.
In childbirth there can be two support persons in the delivery room and one support person in the maternity ward. There is no time limit for support persons visits to departments.
Relatives of critically ill patients are also allowed to visit the units as agreed with the staff.
At emergency and appointments, the escort may be present throughout the visit if the patient's condition so requires. You can also come to the hospital to pick up the patient.
Visits to the above units are permitted in accordance with the current guidelines of the VSSHP:
- Visits take place only in under the guidance of unit staff.
- Only healthy and completely asymptomatic visitors can come.
- Visitors and incoming patients should wear a face mask (take your own mask with you).
- The number of visitors is generally two visitors per patient.
- Visitors are kindly requested to confirm the suitability of their visit in advance from that unit.
- Guests and escorts should use hand sanitizer when entering and leaving the hospital, ward, and patient room.
Coronavirus tests etc.
The result of the coronavirus test is usually reported from the Tyks laboratory within two days of sampling. As a rule, the answer comes by text message from the party from whom the referral for sampling was received. The test result is also reported in the Omakanta service. If the response is delayed by more than two days, it is advisable to contact the party from whom the referral was made.
- See also children and coronavirus (THL).
- The Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) follows the epidemic closely and posts updated information on these pages:
The regional corona prevention group of Southwest Finland
The regional corona prevention group of Southwest Finland is a joint steering group of many actors. The group meets regularly and outlines regional recommendations.
Read more about the composition of the regional corona prevention group.