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The objectives of the wellbeing services counties are to:

  • ensure equal quality social wellbeing and healthcare services and rescue services for all residents in the wellbeing services county
  • improve the availability and accessibility of services
  • reduce inequalities in wellbeing and healthcare
  • secure the supply of skilled labour
  • meet the challenges of aging and declining birth rates; and
  • curb cost growth

The public sector will remain the provider and main producer of services. The state will finance the organisation of social welfare and healthcare services in wellbeing services counties in the early stages of the reform. In addition, wellbeing services counties may charge customers and other usage fees in accordance with applicable law. Parliament will decide on a possible right to levy taxes as preparations for the social security reform progress.

Private actors and the third sector will complement the public social welfare and healthcare services. Municipalities remain responsible for promoting the wellbeing and health of their residents, i.e., they will continue to be responsible for, among other areas, daycare, education, physical education and culture.

Five collaboration areas for specialised services will be created. They will be based on the existing catchment areas for highly specialised healthcare (erva). Ostrobothnia remains part of Turku’s specialised responsibility area.

Citizens still have access to social welfare and healthcare services across provincial borders.

The county council elected in the first county elections on 23 January 2022 exercises the highest decision-making power in the wellbeing services county.

More information on the national health and social services reform (SOTE ) website

From the beginning of 2023, the responsibility for organising social welfare and healthcare services and rescue services will be transferred from municipalities to 21 wellbeing services counties. In the wellbeing services counties, operating structures and practices are created to generate people-oriented service entities.

The Government’s website on the health and social services reform (SOTE)