Finland’s Covid situation

Finlands Covid situation

Martta Rajamaki, Journalist

COVID-19 has brought along restrictions, and guidelines that people all over the world need to follow to stay safe. And while in some countries the restrictions are extremely strict, some countries have a pretty good hold on Covid and have been able to limit restrictions so that normal life can be possible. Finland being one of those countries, has kept up an exceptionally good COVID rate with about only 10 cases per day during the summer! We have been in quarantine for a year now, and while COVID has brought a stop to everyday activities here, Finland’s schools have been in person. The entire time! Finland’s situation has gotten worse because of the small guidelines there and remote/distance learning has started to evolve, but considering that Finland has stayed in school until now, it’s pretty impeccable. Now, let’s go back to the beginning of this entire situation. In Finland, schools had a 2 month lockdown in March. Schools were closed and were quickly followed by other institutions like restaurants, salons, etc. Officials credit the outcome to factors such as early government action, which included a two-month lockdown in March and a ban on travel in and out of the capital.

And while the Lockdown lasted there for only 2 months, it had a pretty good impact on the numbers and rates of covid in Finland during the summer. 

 

The numbers went up after the summer which went up as high as 385 cases per day from the summer’s average of 30 per day. And since the situation has gotten worse since then, the leaders of Finland decided to put more restrictions on stores and other institutions. As the pandemic became worse in countries across the globe, most governments took the precaution of closing their schools in an attempt to contain the spread of the virus. And when the pandemic started, Finland started to shut down some institutions for 2 months. Schools being one of them. And since Finland has just recently closed some schools and put them to distance learning, the numbers aren’t looking so great especially for the perspective that schools have been open for a YEAR even with this COVID situation going on. And the COVID cases are only rising, which is why the schools are starting to shut down. Especially since the vaccine has been extremely slow in getting around the country. But let’s talk more about the summer situation. In the summer of 2020, the COVID cases were extremely low. Institutions were open along with people continuing their regular lives. However, since during the summer, the situation wasn’t bad and people went out as they would regularly, the numbers started rising with winter around the corner. 

 

The teacher’s opinions, as long with politicians and scientists, were complicated. In fact, 57% of teachers felt that they could support students with the use of digital technology. But considering that Finland has been in-person for the past year, it might be hard on not only teachers, but students as well. Especially their mental health. Sitting in front of a screen for hours on end is not easy, although, that’s what the U.S has been doing. And parents are concerned for the health of their kids if Finland does go straight into lockdown. The physical and mental health of kids is extremely important to consider in this pandemic since staying inside for a long period of time can cause all sorts of mental issues. Nonetheless, the solitude of lockdown has exacerbated mental health issues which already affect one in five people in Finland, the highest rate in the OECD. Mika Salminen, Finland’s top epidemiologist, says, “The situation looked worrying when there was a rapid growth in infections” But the rapid growth came to a halt during the summer of 2020. “But it’s clear that the peak has passed.” And while the situation seemed to be bettering by the day, the rates started to rise once again after the restrictions were set loose. However, the new restrictions that are going to be put into action soon, will not have a big impact on adults as it will have on kids. “The economy is structured so that it’s not necessary for a large proportion of the Finnish workforce to be in the workplace,” Nelli Hankonen, associate professor of social psychology at Helsinki University, told AFP. While we’ve come a long way with the COVID shot along with the new layers of protection from this virus, we still need to be careful with everything going on, and remember that this will all be over soon and the only way we are going to get through this is if we think as ‘we’ not ‘me’.

 

http://www.oecd.org/education/Finland-coronavirus-education-country-note.pdf

http://www.oecd.org/education/Finland-coronavirus-education-country-note.pdf

Why is Finland coping so well with the coronavirus crisis … – DW

www.dw.com › coronavirus-finland-sweden-role-model

https://medicalxpress.com/news/2020-11-finland-europe-quiet-success-covid-.html

 

Picture citing- https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Mika_Salminen_3_2020.jpg