The coronavirus situation has deteriorated in Ostrobothnia during the week. Increased travel during the Christmas and New Year period, especially from high-risk countries such as Norway, and the potential gathering of people increase the risk of the Omicron variant spreading in Ostrobothnia. To reduce cases from abroad and so-called risk countries, the Ostrobothnia Corona Coordination Group strongly recommends that travellers arriving in Finland take a coronavirus test. The group recommends that the test be taken within two to three days after arrival in Finland. Before the result is ready, the person tested must minimise contact with other people. One way to do this is to be in voluntary quarantine. To slow down the spread of infection, the group also reminds of the recommendations already in place: hand hygiene, face mask protection and safe social distancing.

Apart from the post-border testing recommendation, no other new recommendations were issued by the Ostrobothnia Corona Coordination Group at its meeting on Tuesday 21 December. The recommendation to wear a face mask and the recommendation for remote working (teleworking) are valid in the region until 31 December. There is also a restriction on gatherings in the region, which prohibits indoor public meetings and general meetings of more than 50 people. The meeting restriction issued by the Regional State Administrative Agency of Western and Inner Finland is valid until 19 January 2022.

Ostrobothnia still in the community transmission phase

At its meeting, the group stated that Ostrobothnia still meets the criteria for a region in the community transmission phase. The region’s incidence figure was 203 on Tuesday. The last time the figure was over 200 was in mid-September. Although the number of infections has been on the rise, 75% of the infection chains, or most of them, have still been identified.

The recommendations and restrictions in force in Ostrobothnia can be read on the website of Vaasa Central Hospital. The site also shows that the criteria for a community transmission phase in Ostrobothnia have been met.

For travel, countries with a high risk of coronavirus infection can be checked on the THL website

Incentive to obtain vaccination protection

The Ostrobothnia Corona Coordination Group encourages people to take vaccine protection. Of the region’s population, 87.9% has received one dose of the vaccine, 84.3% has received two doses of the vaccine, and 17.5% has received three doses of the vaccine (Monday 20 December 2021). Only residents over 12 years of age have been taken into account.

Hospital visits depend on pandemic situation

As the pandemic situation worsens, the Ostrobothnia Corona Coordination Group recalls the guidelines for hospital visits. (The instructions can be read in their entirety on the Vaasa Central Hospital website.) During visits, it is of paramount importance to follow the prevailing protective measures, such as wearing a face mask, visiting only when completely healthy, disinfecting hands and avoiding more than 1-2 visitors per patient. The instructions for the visit apply, among other things, to the relatives and escorts of the patients.

It is also recommended that visitors to the hospital consider whether a visit is necessary in the current pandemic situation.

The Ostrobothnia Corona Coordination Group will next meet on Tuesday 28 December 2021 or earlier if necessary.

Compilation of coronavirus indicators in Ostrobothnia

Epidemiological criteria for spreading regions: Reached in Ostrobothnia (Ostrobothnia is a region in the community transmission phase).

Total number of corona infections: 4920 (Tuesday 21 December 2021)

Regional incidence (14 days): 203 (Tuesday 21 December 2021)

Proportion of positive samples (last week, mean): 4.9%

Coronavirus vaccinations in the region (NOTE! Over 12-year-olds): Of the region’s population, 87.9% has received one dose of the vaccine, 84.3% has received two doses of the vaccine, and 17.5% has received three doses of the vaccine (Monday 20 December 2021).

Meeting participants:

Marina Kinnunen, VSHP, pj., Peter Nieminen, VSHP, Juha Salonen, VSHP, Heikki Kaukoranta, Vaasa, Tomas Häyry, Vaasa, Miia Kaartinen, AVI, Tanja Pietiläinen, AVI, Tuula Hannila-Handelberg, THL, Hanna Hattar, Press Officer VSHP, Päivi Berg, Secretary, VSHP.

Role and composition of the Ostrobothnia Regional Corona Coordination Group

The task of the group is to plan and implement measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus infection (COVID-19) in its region. The use of recommendations and restrictive measures requires a comprehensive assessment in which decisions are made and weighed in terms of epidemiological, social and economic impacts and in relation to fundamental rights.

12/23/2021 redaktion_toimitus