Tuesday. 31.03.2020
El tiempo

Number of coronavirus infections diagnosed in Finland rises to 700

THL warns that the risk of getting infected "has increased throughout Finland" and the country is currently "preparing for a wider epidemic."
Number of coronavirus infections diagnosed in Finland rises to 700

The coronavirus epidemic continues to gain ground in Finland.

According to the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL), on Monday 23 March at 14:30 the number of Covid-19 cases confirmed by laboratory tests was 700.

Those are 74 more cases or 11.8% more than the previous day (Sunday), when the number of infections escalated by 20% and reached 626. The authorities note that these are the figures that have been collected directly from hospitals.

Among the infected, there are currently 50 people hospitalized. Of them, 13 are receiving intensive care. So far, 10,500 people have been tested in Finland and only one death caused by coronavirus has been reported, an elderly person from the Helsinki-Uusimaa hospital district.

To date, the number of infections notified to the Register of Communicable Diseases is 490. But THL has said they expect "delays and regional variation," therefore, the figures do not coincide with those collected directly from hospital districts.

Several people have already recovered after receiving hospital care.

Preparing for a wider epidemic

Authorities admit that the actual number of COVID-19 infections in Finland is likely to be higher than reported because not all people with mild symptoms are tested.

Despite the still modest impact of the epidemic in Finland, the country is preparing for the moment when things get worse.

THL warned in its website that "the risk of getting infected has increased throught Finland." Specially "over the past few days, coronavirus infections have been increasing in the Uusimaa region."

Health authorities say that currently "Finland is preparing for a wider epidemic" that is likely to "progress at different rates across the country."

In fact, Prime Minister Sanna Marin said on public television on Saturday that the government is considering restricting people's movements from the capital region (Uusimaa) and the rest of Finland. The Ministry of Finance, Katri Kulmuni, confirmed on Monday that further restrictions to mobility will be decided on Monday or Tuesday this week.

Exceptional circumstances

The Finnish Government, together with the President of the Republic, has stated that due to the coronavirus outbreak, Finland is going through "exceptional circumstances."

During this crisis, the Government policies will be enforced in accordance with the Infectious Diseases Act, the Emergency Act and other legislation.

Schools, colleges and universities have been closed, public gatherings, movement and visits to health units have been restricted, social and health care capacity has been increased and border traffic has been restricted since 19 March.