To the content

Changes to face mask recommendations within social welfare and healthcare and new vaccine preparations

The pandemic and vaccination groups of the Wellbeing Services County of Ostrobothnia have gathered to discuss the wearing of face masks in social welfare and healthcare premises as well as new vaccine preparations that are tailored to provide better protection against variants of the coronavirus.

The Ostrobothnia region’s pandemic management group has decided to ease the face mask recommendation within social welfare and healthcare settings. The face mask will continue to be used at receptions whenever there is close contact, but in waiting areas and corridors, for example, you can now walk without a face mask if you so wish. There is no need for protection if it is possible to maintain a safe social distance or conduct business from behind protective glass.

– A face mask can still be used everywhere, which is recommended. Escorts and visitors to treatment wards are required to use protective equipment in a similar manner. Special attention must be paid when visiting wards and service housing units for the elderly and those belonging to risk groups. It is also still a good idea to pay attention to hand hygiene. Hand sanitisers are available at all receptions, commented Chief Medical Officer Peter Nieminen.

If you have symptoms, you should still stay at home and visit the wards only if you are healthy. A face mask must be worn when applying for a coronavirus test. Do not visit any social welfare and healthcare units if you know you have been exposed to the coronavirus.

New vaccine preparations targeted at coronavirus variants

The newest coronavirus vaccine will be introduced in Week 41. The new vaccine preparations are tailored against the Omicron variant. These vaccine preparations are not given as the first or second dose, but are used as booster doses, i.e. from the 3rd dose onwards. Currently, the recommendation for the number of doses to be taken varies according to age and underlying diseases. A contracted coronavirus infection is equivalent to one vaccination.

Influenza vaccinations start in November, and according to the latest recommendation of the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare, people over 65 and those in risk groups are offered a booster dose of the coronavirus vaccine in conjunction with an  influenza vaccination. A booster dose of the coronavirus vaccine can be given regardless of how many vaccines have been received or if you have had the coronavirus. However, at least three months must have passed since the previous vaccine dose or disease. If you wish, you can get this booster dose already during October.

You can find more information on our coronavirus vaccinations page here: