Four-fifths of Finns aged 12 or older are expected to have received both vaccine injections after Friday, 5 November 2021. (Vesa Moilanen – Lehtikuva)


THE 80-PER-CENT TARGET for vaccine uptake among 12-year-olds and older is set to be reached today in Finland, according to Otto Helve, a chief physician at the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL).

“A vaccination coverage of 80 per cent is probably reached tomorrow,” he commented in a press conference on Thursday.

He pointed out that although the milestone signifies that the majority of people – especially those who are vulnerable to serious forms of the coronavirus disease – are protected against the virus, it remains important that as many as possible get vaccinated as a considerable proportion of the population remains unvaccinated.

“This is the result of our joint efforts, and we should be proud of it.”

Officials at THL and the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health revealed yesterday that the target has already been reached in seven hospital districts. Not a single district, they added, has a coverage lower than 70 per cent.

The Finnish government announced the 80-per-cent target earlier this autumn, stating that it would signal the large-scale lifting of restrictions adopted to limit the spread of the virus. With many of the restrictions being lifted earlier, though, reaching the target does not have a major impact on the situation.

Helve on Thursday also revealed that the burden placed on special health care by the epidemic has decreased slightly from last week, with the rise in demand for hospital capacity apparently coming to a stop. The number of new admissions to intensive care units has decreased particularly.

Aleksi Teivainen – HT