National service reform: Reform of the content and operating methods of health and social services

The service reform will reform the legislation concerning the contents of health and social services and the related guidance to correspond to the current structures of and the national objectives for health and social services. 

The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health is responsible for the preparation of the service reform. 

The national service reform complements the reform of the structures of health and social services (health and social services reform), which transferred the responsibility for organising services from municipalities to wellbeing services counties at the beginning of 2023.  

The service reform is part of the Programme of Prime Minister Petteri Orpo’s Government.

Cooperation and interaction with wellbeing services counties central

The national service reform supports the wellbeing services counties’ own restructuring programmes, which aim, among other things, to improve the efficiency of healthcare and social welfare operations, reform operating practices and develop remote and digital services. 

The wellbeing services counties are participating in the preparation of the service reform as part of the guidance of the wellbeing services counties, which is also being reformed. In addition, regulatory changes concerning health and social services are being prepared in cooperation with the wellbeing services counties. This will improve the effectiveness and compatibility of the legislative proposals and ensure their realistic implementation and cost impact assessment. 

Vision: Effective health and social services 

The five objectives set for the national service reform are

 •    stronger prevention
•    better integration, availability and continuity of services
•    clarification of the service system
•    increased effectiveness and cost-effectiveness
•    improved preparedness and treatment during disruptions. 

The implementation of the reform will take place through legislative changes, the guidance system reform, programmes and projects.  

The purpose of the legislative amendments is to reduce the level of regulatory detail. The programmes included in the national service reform include the Good Work Programme, which seeks to ensure the sufficiency and availability of healthcare and social welfare personnel, the Digital Health and Social Services Programme, which is related to the digitalisation of health and social services, the Knowledge Management Development Programme and some projects of the Sustainable Growth Programme. 

•    Good Work Programme – Sufficiency and availability of healthcare and social welfare personnel

National service reform to be implemented 2023–2027 

The implementation of the reform is to be gradual.  

Certain government proposals to reform legislation have already been submitted to Parliament, and the rest will be submitted between 2024 and 2026. All other measures of the service reform are under way or will be launched in the spring season of 2024.  

In addition to the wellbeing services counties, the parties involved in the preparation and implementation of the national service reform include the Ministry of Finance and the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare.  


Minna Saario, Chief Specialist, Director, National Service Reform, tel. +358 295 163 146, [email protected]
Kirsi Ruuhonen, Senior Ministerial Adviser, Director of Legislative Affairs, National Service Reform, tel. +358 295 163 239, [email protected]