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MSAH and THL informs
Decline in COVID-19 cases slowing down — need for hospital care remains unchanged

Ministry of Social Affairs and Health
Publication date 2.9.2021 10.01 | Published in English on 2.9.2021 at 12.57
Press release 242/2021

The number of new COVID-19 cases has continued to fall in Finland, but the favourable development reported last week has slowed down. The total number of new cases reported between 23 and 29 August was 4,064. This is about 300 cases fewer than in the preceding week when the figure was 4,386. COVID-19 continues to spread especially among unvaccinated young people and adults.

The incidence of new cases over the last two-week period (16–29 August) was 152 per 100,000 inhabitants. This is 18 per cent less than in the preceding two-week period (2–15 August) when the incidence of cases was 185 per 100,000 inhabitants.

Currently, the epidemic is spreading the most among unvaccinated working-age people, but case rates have started to fall even among them. Although more and more cases have been reported among children following the wave of the epidemic this summer, the incidence rate is still higher for unvaccinated working-age people than for children under the age of 10.

Record number of tests

People continue to be active in getting tested for COVID-19. A record number of over 172,000 tests were taken in Finland last week. The percentage of positive COVID-19 cases of all samples taken has declined further, standing at 2.4 per cent last week. Of all new cases, 5 per cent originated from abroad and 0.5 per cent were further infections resulting from them.

Prompt contact tracing and quarantine measures prevent further infections effectively. Between 23 and 29 August, a total of 11,123 people were quarantined, which is about 20 per cent less than in the preceding week. Some regions have reported increasing backlogs in contact tracing and delays in placing people in isolation and quarantine. 

The large number of cases places a considerable burden on primary healthcare, and it is reflected as an insufficient number of healthcare and social welfare personnel and, consequently, in the organisation of continued treatment for patients requiring specialised healthcare

The need for specialised healthcare has remained relatively low in recent weeks. Based on the information provided by the hospital districts, a total of 97 people were receiving hospital care due to the COVID-19 disease on 1 September 2021. Of them, 26 were inpatients in primary healthcare, 50 inpatients in specialised healthcare and 21 inpatients in intensive care. On 1 September 2021, the total number of COVID-19-related deaths since the start of the epidemic was 1,030.

Half of the population have received their second vaccine dose

In Finland, about 72 per cent of the population have received at least their first vaccine dose and 50 per cent their second dose. About 57 per cent of people aged 12–15 have already received their first vaccine dose. More than 80 per cent of those over 40 have received their first dose, but the rate at which young adults are getting vaccinated has slowed down. A total of 71 per cent of people aged 16–29 have received their first vaccine dose.

The epidemiological situation is monitored weekly. A report on the epidemic is published on Thursdays at 10.00.

The monitoring report on the epidemic published today and the previous reports are available on the website of the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare.

Inquiries:

Liisa-Maria Voipio-Pulkki, Strategic Director, Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, [email protected] 
Pasi Pohjola, Director, Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, [email protected]
Mika Salminen, Director, Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare, [email protected]
Otto Helve, Chief Physician, Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare, [email protected]
 

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