Finland regions

Finland Reissue National Face Mask Recommendation Amid Rising COVID-19 Cases

The Finnish National Institute of Health and Welfare (THL) has re-issued national recommendations on the use of face masks, as COVID-19 infection rates rise in the country due to the spread of the Omicron variant, reports Xinhua.

The health authority recommends that people use face masks in all public spaces as well as on public transport across the country, according to a press release released by the THL on Friday.

The updated guidelines apply to the entire Finnish population aged 12 and over, regardless of their vaccination status.

In the press release, THL director Mika Salminen said that winter increases the risk of infection. “The more infections there are in the population, the greater the risk. The risk of infection is also considerably higher indoors than outdoors.”

The recommendation does not apply to health and social services, early childhood education or education, or to work communities with separate recommendations, the THL said.

In August 2020, the THL released its first face mask recommendation to citizens to curb the spread of the new coronavirus. As infection rates decline and vaccine coverage increases in Finland, the health authority has relaxed its recommendation to focus on judging individuals at the end of September this year.

According to data released by the THL, Finland reported 2,079 more COVID-19 cases and eight deaths on Friday. To date, the country has recorded a total of 213,318 cases and 1,454 deaths. A total of 34 cases of the Omicron variant have been detected in Finland.