Koronavilkku, Finland’s app for tracing contacts with coronavirus carriers, was launched to the public on 31 August 2020. (Heikki Saukkomaa – Lehtikuva)


THE FINNISH INSTITUTE for Health and Welfare (THL) on Friday said it is aware of more than 40 cases in which a person infected with the new coronavirus has exposed several others to the virus in early-childhood, primary or upper secondary education since the start of the school year.

Although over 1,700 people have been ordered into quarantine due the exposures, only a few further infections have been detected.

Fewer than 10 in hospital care despite rise in infections

  • The Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) has revealed the number of laboratory-confirmed coronavirus infections rose by 43 to 8,512 between Thursday and Friday.
  • Almost 240 of the infections were detected during the latest seven-day period between 2 and 8 September, representing an increase of 48 from the period between 26 August and 1 September.
  • The total for the latest two weeks stood at 428, translating to a two-week incidence of 7.7 cases per 100,000 inhabitants.
  • The death toll from the virus stayed at 337 between Thursday and Friday.
  • The number of people in hospital care rose by two to eight, while that of people in critical care stayed at one.
  • A total of 789,500 samples have been tested for the virus, signalling an increase of 10,600 from Thursday.
  • Almost 90 per cent of people with confirmed infections have recovered from the disease.

“The initial monitoring data indicate that the infected and exposed pupils are being identified reasonably well. There have only been a few further infections so far, similarly to the spring of 2020,” commented Emmi Sarvikivi, a medical advisor at THL.

THL on Friday underlined that it is monitoring the situation among children and young people by collecting data on infections and exposures.

It also clarified the uncertainty surrounding its instructions for testing underage people for the virus. Under school-aged children with mild respiratory symptoms, it said, can be monitored at home for a few days without getting tested. Older children, young people and adults, on the other hand, should get tested immediately after developing symptoms associated with the virus and refrain from leaving home.

Children with only mild symptoms should also get tested without delay if they or another family member have been exposed to a confirmed coronavirus carrier or travelled abroad in the past two weeks, according to Sarvikivi.

“If people with mild symptoms fail to comply with the instructions on testing and avoiding contacts, the diagnosis is delayed and both the likelihood of further infections and the group of exposed people will grow,” she stated.

“This makes the effort to fight the epidemic more difficult.”

Aleksi Teivainen – HT