Wednesday 17 February 2021
The translated version of the coronavirus review for Lapland is published once a week.
Anyone experiencing even the slightest of symptoms while in Lapland must take a coronavirus test.
Links about the current situation:
Lapland Hospital District
(current information at 12:22)
The COVID-19 situation has worsened throughout the country. The majority of hospital districts have now entered the spreading or accelerating phases of the epidemic. The Lapland Hospital District is still in the baseline phase of the coronavirus.
The incidence rate based on the last two weeks (week numbers 5 and 6, 1–14 February) is 37.6 per 100,000 inhabitants.
The incidence rate based on one week, i.e. week no. 6 (8–14 February) is 25.7 per 100,000 inhabitants.
This incidence rate also includes cases of patients who live outside the Lapland Hospital District area. For this reason, the figure can differ from that announced by the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) that does not count those living outside of Lapland.
Within the space of around a week, a total of 13 cases related to the Pyhätunturi case have been confirmed – the source of the infections was found to be the music evening held at the Calle House on 9 February
Nine new cases have been confirmed today. Three of these are related to Pyhätunturi in the Pelkosenniemi Municipality. In both Kolari and Rovaniemi, two infections were detected with people already in quarantine, and in Sodankylä one infection was confirmed with a person who lives outside the region and was already in quarantine. In addition, one infection related to the previous Pello chain of infections was confirmed.
On Tuesday, 16 February, five new cases were reported. A person already in quarantine was found to be infected in Kittilä. The infection confirmed in Kemijärvi was found to be related to the previous chain of infections in Pyhätunturi. In addition, a person visiting Pelkosenniemi was found to have the coronavirus infection. An infection coming from Sweden was confirmed in Kolari. In addition, one infection was found in Pello that was related to the previous chain of infection confirmed in Pello. On Monday 15 February, three cases were confirmed in Pello.
Last week (week no. 6, 8–14 February) a total of 3,394 coronavirus tests were taken in the Lapland Hospital District. Of these, 2,897 were rapid antigen tests. A total of 30 infections were confirmed, representing 0.88% of the tests carried out.
Recent mass exposures to the coronavirus have occurred in house parties. Efforts should be made to avoid large private gatherings at this stage when the virus situation can potentially deteriorate rapidly.
If you have been in the Calle House on the evening of Tuesday 9 February, you must immediately take a coronavirus test
A total of 13 Pyhätunturi-related infections have been reported in about a week. 11 of the infected persons have been confirmed as being coronavirus positive in testing carried out in the Pelkosenniemi Municipality tests, and two other infections in Northern Savonia. The source of the Pyhätunturi coronavirus infections have been traced back to the music night organised at the Calle House on Tuesday 9 February 2021. The event has given rise to a number of infections and further infections. Tracing tasks are still partly ongoing.
If you have been in the Calle House on the evening of 9 February 2021, you must immediately seek a coronavirus test at the nearest coronavirus testing station. If you are in Pelkosenniemi, you can book your coronavirus test appointment by calling 040 563 8131. When staying elsewhere in Lapland, instructions for taking the coronavirus test can be found here.
Accuracy of rapid antigen and PCR tests are at the same level – false positive results may occur in both tests
False positive results for both tests are found in 1–2% of the tests taken. This means that the test result can be positive, even if the person is not in fact COVID-19 positive. With rapid antigen tests, false positive results may be suspected when the test analysis shows a weak positive result. These tests are checked using two separate PCR tests, and if the PCR tests are negative, the original rapid antigen test may be considered as being a false positive result.
When the test result appears to be a weak positive result, extensive quarantine measures shall not be taken until the result is confirmed positive using a PCR coronavirus test. However, the person who has received a weak positive coronavirus test result must remain isolated until the result is confirmed.
Instructions for spring break (skiing holiday) holidaymakers: do not travel if you experience even the mildest of symptoms, and if any symptoms occur during the trip, you should take a coronavirus test – testing will also be free for people travelling
The spring break season will begin in the coming week. In the Helsinki region, the situation of the coronavirus has deteriorated rapidly and the British variant of the coronavirus virus has been recorded to a considerable extent in the capital. In Helsinki, the incidence rate during two weeks per 100,000 persons is 233 and in Vantaa the corresponding figure is 297. The corresponding figure in the Lapland Hospital District is around 30. The situation in Helsinki is almost ten times greater than in the Lapland Hospital District.
It is very important that spring break holidaymakers do not travel if they experience symptoms. If any symptoms of infection occur during the trip, you should take a coronavirus test, even if you experience the mildest of symptoms. Visitors to the region are tested free of charge in all the municipalities of Lapland.
Safety instructions should be strictly observed when travelling. Face masks must be used in all indoor areas, including accommodation establishments and restaurants, apart from when actually dining. Safety instructions also include compliance with safe distancing rules and ensuring good hand hygiene.
Number of positive coronavirus tests confirmed in the Lapland Hospital District by week
Week no. 5 (1–7 February): 14 cases
Week no. 6 (8–14 February): 30 cases
Week no. 7 (current week): 17 cases (as of 17 February at 12:22)
The total number of cases confirmed in the Lapland Hospital District on the basis of coronavirus tests conducted at testing stations is 555. This figure includes people who live outside the region.
Infection Control Unit
Länsi-Pohja Hospital District
(current information at 12:35)
The coronavirus situation in the Länsi-Pohja area is still in the acceleration phase.
Länsi-Pohja is still in the period of epidemic acceleration – fine-tuning of coronavirus recommendations
During week no. 6 (8–14 February), 19 new coronavirus infections were confirmed in the Länsi-Pohja Hospital District. Six new cases have been confirmed this week, including one today. The tracing of infections in the municipalities in the region is effective and almost all infections have been successfully traced.
One probable case of a coronavirus variant has so far been detected in the area of the Länsi-Pohja Hospital District and the result of the validation sample is pending. In respect to hospital care, the situation has remained calm and there are currently no coronavirus patients in the Central Hospital. The coronavirus epidemic situation in the Länsi-Pohja Hospital District area is still in the acceleration phase.
Finnish championship-level team sports are allowed
The Regional Pandemic Working Group decided to overturn its earlier recommendation for public gathering restrictions to also apply to team sports at the Finnish championship level. By overturning this recommendation, the Regional Pandemic Working Group aims to reduce the extra travel associated with training and competitions. However, sports events should be organised without spectators and in full compliance with the coronavirus safety rules.
The Regional Pandemic Working Group updated its recommendation on novice team sport activities so that in the future team-based leisure activities are allowed for persons under the age of 20. Previously, the age limit was 18 years. All recommendations and restrictions currently applied in the Länsi-Pohja area are listed here and on the Hospital District website.
As the local municipal elections approach, national instructions for voters and election officials are being compiled for election organisation and voting. However, current restrictions on public gatherings apply, for example, to election events and market events organised by the political parties.
National guidelines are also expected for organisers and participants of matriculation examinations held in the spring.
Municipalities inform about the progress of vaccinations
Vaccines arrive weekly in the municipalities of the Länsi-Pohja area, but quantities remain small for the time being. The municipalities will provide information on their own websites about the vaccination timetables and making appointments. Vaccination is carried out in accordance with the vaccination order defined by the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare.
Different vaccines have different age limits, so vaccination in municipalities will not proceed in the exact age order. The huge number of questions about vaccination times are now putting unnecessary burden on the health care service. These enquiries do not speed up the time for receiving vaccinations. The vaccine will be available in turn to anyone aged 16 years or over who wants to take the vaccine.
The Regional Pandemic Group will continue to recommend that the Koronavilkku app be downloaded and used. For those who have been notified of exposure via the Koronavilkku app, there is a change coming in the near future, which also recommends that asymptomatic people should be directed to take the coronavirus test.
The Länsi-Pohja Regional Pandemic Working Group
Number of positive coronavirus tests confirmed in the Länsi-Pohja Hospital District by week
Week no. 5 (1–7 February): 29 cases
Week no. 6 (8–14 February): 19 cases
Week no. 7 (current week): 6 cases (as of 17 February at 12:35)
The total number of cases confirmed in the Länsi-Pohja Hospital District on the basis of coronavirus tests conducted at testing stations is 510.
Infection Control Unit