News in brief

THE FINNISH GOVERNMENT HAS ISSUED A LONG-AWAITED RECOMMENDATION on the use of face masks in public spaces, with the official recommendation being that face masks should be worn on public transport and other confined spaces where social distancing is not possible.

The recommendation was decided upon by Finland's main health authority, THL, and was later backed by the government in a press conference in Helsinki this afternoon. The recommendation will apply to all regions in Finland except North Karelia, East Savo, and south and central Ostrobothnia. The recommendation does also not apply to any person under the age of 15 or to anyone who has a valid medical reason not to wear a face covering. 

Although this is a recommendation, meaning that it is not mandatory by law, today's announcement will likely lead to a marked increase in the sale and use of face masks throughout the country. 

At the same press conference, PM Sanna Marin announced that the government's previously scrapped teleworking recommendation would be reinstated in the regions of Uusimaa, Southwest Finland, and the Länsi-Pohja hospital district. 

The announcements come as Finland is grappling with a marked uptick in new coronavirus cases. On Thursday alone, 41 new cases of COVID-19 were confirmed in Finland, the highest daily total since May. 


Adam Oliver Smith - HT

Image Credit: Lehtikuva