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Finland - New coronavirus variant could be more dangerous for young people

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  • Finland - New coronavirus variant could be more dangerous for young people

    New coronavirus variant could be more dangerous for young people

    FINLAND 01 MARCH 2021
    Young people could be more vulnerable to a new mutation of the COVID-19 virus, according to the Helsinki University Hospital (HUS).

    Asko Järvinen, head of infectious diseases at HUS, told Ilta Sanomat that Finland has seen a surge in cases of the highly contagious new variant, which was first detected in the UK.
    While research on how this strain affects different age groups is still ongoing, reports from Iraq indicate that it is infecting age groups that the original virus did not, including children.

    In Finland, people below the age of 30 account for the highest number of cases. The new mutation, which is thought to be deadlier than the original virus variants, has also resulted in 30–40 per cent more hospital stays.

    In the past few weeks, the HUS hospital district has registered more young coronavirus patients in hospital wards and intensive care units than ever before.


  • #2
    Finland Declares State of Emergency as Pandemic Intensifies

    Leo LaikolaMarch 1, 2021, 5:23 AM CST

    Finland declared a state of emergency, allowing it to close bars and restaurants to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

    In addition, the government may invoke emergency powers at a later stage, Prime Minister Sanna Marin said on Monday. That could include restricting people’s movements, she said.


    The number and incidence of coronavirus infections have increased fast during February, and mutations may put the health-care system under strain, the government said. The Nordic country has now reported more than 56,000 infections and 742 fatalities.UP NEXT


    • #3
      Okieman Comment: And next to Finland is the country of Sweden. It is what they do, not what they say that is important.


      Sweden has U-turned on several of its coronavirus measures and is now facing its first lockdown, warns PM

      Sophia Ankel
      Feb 27, 2021, 9:03 AM

      Sweden's Prime Minister Stefan Lofven warned this week that the country is facing its first lockdown since the start of the pandemic as it seems unable to control its rising coronavirus case numbers.

      The country, which famously relied on mostly voluntary measures during the pandemic, has been forced to gradually tighten its distinct approach after it's seen a rise in cases in the last two weeks.

      On Thursday, Sweden reported more than 4,800 new coronavirus cases and 40 deaths — the highest since the beginning of the month, according to a John Hopkins University's tracker Sweden has recorded more than 659,000 cases since the start of the pandemic.



      • #4

        Finland COVID-19 variant reportedly may not show up in tests

        By Yaron Steinbuch

        February 18, 2021 | 2:37pm | Updated

        Scientists fear that a new COVID-19 variant in Finland — different from the UK and South African strains — may be fueling the spread of the disease by not showing up in tests, according to reports.

        The Helsinki-based Vita Laboratories, which made the discovery, said it’s unlikely the variant emerged in Finland, given the Scandinavian country’s low rate of infection, the Evening Standard reported.

        “Vita Laboratoriot Oy and the Institute of Biotechnology at the University of Helsinki have detected a previously unknown variant of the coronavirus in a sample from southern Finland,” the lab said about the variant, dubbed “Fin-796H.”

        “Mutations in this variant make it difficult to detect in at least one of the WHO-recommended PCR tests. This discovery could have a significant impact on determining the spread of the disease,” it added.



        Okieman Comment: I know that the UK variant was found in Finland. What is driving cases right now in there is not reported specifically. They just say "new variant". I have concern that this new Fin-796H may be the cause. What ever is the cause it is definitely making Finland and Sweden put in more stringent restrictions in an attempt to slow it down. My "spidey sense" is going off with this similar to how it did when the UK variant was showing up in the news in Kent. I would prefer to be wrong.


        • #5
          ----------------Google Translated----------------

          How does it feel to close a municipality when there are no corona infections? Mayor: "I would have liked more regional assessment"

          Many municipalities are now facing government-led closure measures, although there have been only a few coronary infections throughout the epidemic.

          Preparations for the closure, which will begin next week, are now under way in many municipalities where coronary infections are zero or have been counted on two-fingered fingers throughout the year-long epidemic.
          According to the mayor, the closure measures strongly recommended by the government in Multia, which has a population of 1,500 in Central Finland, are likely to be implemented in full, even though Multia has had no or fewer infections and therefore does not appear in public statistics.
          - Yes, it seems unfortunate to take these heavy restrictive measures once we have avoided the disease. On the other hand, I understand that it is worth taking steps to keep the situation so good, says Mayor Noora Pajari.



          Okieman Comment: I have looked at a number of regional newspapers in Finland. Much of the country is not experiencing many cases of Covid-19. I posted this article to illustrate this. Finland is going to a nationwide set of restrictions even though they are not experiencing it nationwide. So,....something has them spooked enough to shut things down everywhere to limit the spread. Maybe it is just the UK variant causing this. It is bad enough. But I have to wonder if this other variant is driving it. Here is Estonia: Scroll down to see the chart. Estonia is across part of the Baltic Sea from Finland. Here is Sweden:


          • #6
            Avian Flu Diary - Michael Coston, had a post about Fin-796H on February 20, 2021. It is here if you would like to read it:
            and also here on FluTrackers:

            Croftsblogs had also posted about it on February 24, 2021. It is here if you would like to read it:

            I put these links here for those who would like additional context about this variant Thankyou both Avian Flu Diary and Croftsblogs for the work you do.


            • #8
              Just as we watched China, we should be looking at what is going on currently in Europe. I see all over the US press..."the numbers are down"..."gonna be over in April"..."some states are close to herd immunity"...

              Please...everyone...common sense...

              If you are high risk...please use caution...we all want to return to "normal". Large hard lockdowns are not enforceable - you need to protect yourself.

              Here are more Europe threads:

              Czech Republic faces 'hellish days', needs tighter COVID measures, PM says - February 24, 2021

              Poland entering third wave of COVID-19, health ministry says

              Italy requires an "immediate total lockdown" on a nationwide level a senior coronavirus advisor to the Italian health ministry says - February 15, 2021


              • #9
                In the UK the government is showing graphs of hospitilisations of over 80's going down - down - with those under 80 showing a slower decline in deaths, a decline nonetheless, until the last few days - which seems to show a slight increase. This is in spite of the number of cases confirmed each day dropping rapidly over the past month.

                The graphs are being held up as evidence of the massive vaccination program working well - I am just wondering after this very informative thread - if it could be showing something different. It is a pity there is not a bigger breakdown - I will try to find one. Thank you Okieman and Sharon.
                “The only security we have is our ability to adapt."


                • #10
                  Bus trip results in cluster of South African COVID variant infections

                  FINLAND 03 MARCH 2021

                  A new cluster of COVID-19 cases has been traced to passengers on an inter-city bus that travelled from Helsinki to Savonlinna. The Savonlinna Central Hospital has confirmed that the infections were caused by the South African strain of the virus.

                  As of Wednesday morning, 64 people were confirmed to be infected with the new variant, which is thought to be more contagious than the original virus. The bus was carrying about a dozen passengers when it made the journey on 26 January.


                  Of those that were infected, one person has been hospitalised and the others have reported mild symptoms. All passengers and crew that were aboard the bus in question have been quarantined.

                  Representatives from the Savonlinna Central Hospital believe that the infection originated within the country.

                  Tahira Sequeira

                  Helsinki Times


                  • #11
                    Finland’s Hospitals Come Under Strain as Infections Hit Record

                    Leo LaikolaMarch 4, 2021, 3:03 AM CST

                    The coronavirus pandemic is starting to burden Finland’s hospitals as the weekly number of confirmed infections hit a record, the health ministry warned.


                    The government is set to invoke emergency powers on Friday, which would allow non-urgent care to be delayed as the pandemic spreads. According to the current estimates, an infected person passes the virus on average to about 1.15 to 1.35 others, as the more infectious U.K. strain circulates.

                    Just under 60,000 people in Finland have tested positive for the coronavirus and 759 people have died of the illness since the initial outbreak. Finland is now the second-worst affected in the Nordic region in terms of 14-day incidence, after Sweden, according to WHO data.



                    • #12
                      Finland doubles down on restrictions: Arrivals from Estonia can't enter

                      ERR, ERR News
                      Today at 09.19

                      The restrictions on entering Finland established on February 23, have caused a lot of confusion among Estonian citizens and residents, many of whom travel between the two countries for work, family and other reasons. Since it is now necessary to present a negative coronavirus test, many people have taken that as a sign that the bar on entry for all but the most significant cases has been lifted - which it hasn't.

                      Only those who are able to present a negative COVID-19 test are allowed on ferries sailing between Tallinn and Helsinki. Exceptions are made for children under 13, and transport staff.


                      Finland was one of those states listed, despite having one of the lowest COVID-19 rates in Europe. While, on February 23, the Finnish state established a negative test requirement, this didn't bring with it the hoped relaxation of the restrictions.

                      Latvia has also closed its border, including to EU citizens meaning, with the Russian Federation borders subject to stringent entry requirements even before the pandemic, Estonia is practically cut off from the rest of Europe, other than by air.



                      • #13


                        INTENSIVE CARE BEDS in the Hospital District of Helsinki and Uusimaa (HUS) have started filling up quickly due to a surge in the number of coronavirus infections, reports YLE.

                        Asko J?rvinen, the chief physician of infectious diseases at HUS, revealed yesterday to the public broadcasting company that the number of coronavirus patients has almost doubled in hospitals in the district in a week.
                        A particular concern is the spread of the new, more contagious mutations of the virus – both to and within the borders of Finland.


                        Niinist? slams EU vaccine procurements, suggests Finland could consider direct purchases

                        The Finnish president said the European Medicines Agency (EMA) is "lagging behind" on vaccine approval.
                        Finnish President Sauli Niinist? has criticised the European Union for its joint procurement of coronavirus vaccines.

                        "Which [vaccines] have been ordered and what binding commitments were made? There's no doubt they should have done better at this. We have examples of countries that have been more successful than the EU in getting vaccines for themselves," the president said in an interview with Ilta-Sanomat, published on Saturday.
                        “The only security we have is our ability to adapt."


                        • #14

                          JOENSUU, Finland, March 8, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Rokote Laboratories Finland Ltd., a newly-founded academic spin-out based in Finland is working to develop and introduce to the markets a nasal spray vaccine against COVID. The vaccine is based on research carried out at the University of Helsinki and the University of Eastern Finland.

                          The vaccine uses gene transfer technology developed at the University of Eastern Finland by Academy Professor Seppo Ylä-Herttuala's research group, and the technology has already been successfully used in several clinical trials using gene therapy to treat cardiovascular diseases and cancer
                          “The only security we have is our ability to adapt."


                          • #15

                            Finland Tells EU Commission That Entry Restrictions Are Necessary to Halt COVID-19 Spread
                            Restrictions imposed by Finland’s government on the freedom of movement of European Union citizens’ when entering the country are necessary to halt the further spread of the Coronavirus outbreak as well as its new variants.

                            These comments of Finland’s Ministry of Interior, together with other key ministries, have been addressed to the European Commission as a response to the latter’s addressed letter to the Finnish authorities, urging Finland to terminate its imposed entry and movement restrictions, reports.
                            “The only security we have is our ability to adapt."