Sunday 8/1/21

Covid-19 infections quadrupled in Finland during the summer

Most infections currently originate in Finland with young adults, for example, visiting bars and social gatherings
Covid-19 testing point at Helsinki airport. Photo:
Covid-19 testing point at Helsinki airport. Photo:

Covid-19 infections have increased considerably this summer in Finland, which is experiencing the fourth wave of the epidemic.

According to the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, the number of new coronavirus cases has been increasing in Finland over the past four weeks.

The total number of new infections reported between 12 and 18 July was 2,210. The number of cases per week has quadrupled and the share of positive samples has risen to 2.3 per cent since mid-June.

Due to vaccination coverage, the number of serious cases requiring hospital care has not increased this summer as fast in proportion to the number of new infections as earlier during the epidemic.

"The overall epidemiological situation is, however, worrying because of the rapid increase in the number of new cases," says the latest monitoring report on the epidemic released by the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL).

According to the health agency, most infections currently originate in Finland with young adults, for example, visiting bars and social gatherings.  Between 12 and 18 July, almost 60% of infections were reported among people aged 10–29 and predominantly among those between 18–23 years of age.

"For that reason, the young and young adults should reduce social contacts with risk of infection and get vaccinated as soon as this is made possible," Finnish health authorities emphasized.

Infections contracted abroad

Between 12 and 18 July, 10% of all infections were contracted abroad. The proportion of subsequent further infections was 2%.

As a result of vaccination, the need for hospital care is no longer increasing at the same rate as the number of infections. More than half of the Covid-19 patients currently in intensive care are under 50 years of age.

Based on the information provided by the hospital districts, a total of 56 people were receiving hospital care due to the disease on 21 July 2021. Of them, 6 were inpatients in primary healthcare, 40 inpatients in specialized healthcare and 10 inpatients in intensive care.

According to the forecast, the number of new periods in specialised healthcare and intensive care in Finland will continue to increase slightly over the next week. 

No new deaths related to coronavirus have been reported in the communicable diseases register during the last week of assessment (14–21 July). Finland reported 978 deaths related to the disease since the epidemic started.

In Finland, about 64% of the population have received at least their first vaccine dose and 28% their second dose.