Kymenlaakso recommendations

In addition to the national level, the coronavirus situation in Finland is monitored region by region. On the basis of regional incidence, recommendations are made region-specifically so that they can be related to the number of infections and the prevalence of the disease.

The epidemic situation in Kymenlaakso

The coronavirus situation in Kymenlaakso is in the acceleration phase throughout the region.

Existing regional restrictions and recommendations

Regional restrictions and recommendations in Kymenlaakso will be updated according to the situation, so it is advisable to follow them regularly. Kymsote’s restrictions and recommendations apply throughout Kymenlaakso.

The following restrictions apply for the time being, unless otherwise stated.

Recommendations for wearing a face mask for children over 12 years of age:

Wearing a face mask is strongly recommended in Kymenlaakso for:

  • Public transport and taxis, for both drivers and passengers
  • Public spaces and events
  • Private service providers (shops, banks, etc.)
  • Secondary schools, higher education institutions and liberal cultural institutions for students and staff
  • In comprehensive schools, students from the sixth grade up should wear a mask. The mask recommendation is imposed by grade, regardless of the age of the individual students.
  • Hobby activities
  • Workplaces where safety distances, shift alternations on premises or other hygiene and safety arrangements cannot be implemented
  • Social welfare and healthcare staff in all contact situations

In addition, protection (mask or visor) is strongly recommended for primary and early childhood education staff.

Remote work recommendation and use of masks in workplaces

  • It is recommended that employers arrange remote working for all work where this is temporarily possible.
  • If remote working is not possible, it is recommended that the employer provide staff with instructions to use face masks in all workspaces.
  • The use of masks is recommended in workplaces for everyone, especially if a safety distance of 2 metres cannot be maintained. It is also recommended to wear a mask when employees can maintain a safety distance from each other. If an employee is working alone in a workspace, a mask is not needed.
  • Workplace meals and coffee breaks should be staggered.

Visits to hospitals

  • Visits to patients in Kymenlaakso Central Hospital, Northern Kymi Central Hospital, Hamina and Karhula hospitals and the rehabilitation unit in Hoiku are allowed only on special conditions.
  • The prohibition does not apply to Kymenlaakso Psychiatric Hospital, the palliative care units Villa Apila and Villa Meri, the children’s ward or childbirth support staff. In these cases, visits are permitted in accordance with separate instructions. Visits by close relatives of dying and critically ill patients are also allowed in a manner agreed upon with the staff of the care unit in question.

Visits to residential units

  • Meetings are always arranged in advance with the unit staff.
  • Only healthy persons are allowed to visit close relatives. The meetings will be arranged either outdoors or indoors.
  • Close contact, such as shaking hands or hugging, should be avoided.
  • A mouth and nose guard must be worn throughout the meeting.
  • A safety distance of 2 metres should be maintained throughout the meeting.
  • Staff will provide instructions on hand hygiene, the use of mouth and nose protectors and other necessary practices. The aim is patient safety and the occupational safety of personnel. Persons wearing mouth and nose guards protect their close relatives from coronavirus infection.
  • Personal assistants are comparable to employees, and protect themselves in accordance with the staff instructions when providing assistance.

Organisation of teaching

  • Contact teaching can be arranged in all educational stages, complying with safety arrangements.
    • The number of students participating in contact teaching at each time should be considered individually for each municipality and school, making sure that health considerations can be taken into account.
    • Students attending contact teaching are strongly advised to wear a mask.
    • Special attention must be paid to the safe arrangement of mealtimes.
  • In higher education, it is recommended that teaching is organized in such a way that close contacts can be effectively avoided. These instructions apply to indoor teaching for groups of more than 10 people.

Public events

  • Public events both indoors and outdoors are allowed without limitations regarding the number of attendees.
  • However, the organizer is responsible of mandatory safety measures, such as maintaining safe distances and meeting required hygiene standards.
  • The requirement to keep safe distances apply to indoor activities for more than 10 people and outdoor activities for more than 50 people.

Private and family events

  • Private and family events both indoors and outdoors are allowed without limitations regarding the number of attendees.
  • For indoor events, it is recommended to wear a mask.
  • It is recommended that the organizers of private and family events follow the same recommendations as public event organizers.

Public spaces

  • Indoor swimming pools, sports facilities and staffed gyms run by the local authority are open to public.
  • Museums, libraries, library buses and self-service libraries are open to customers.
  • Youth centers operate normally, taking into account coronavirus-related safety instructions.
  • The use of masks for everyone over the age of 12 and maintaining safe is recommended.

Food and beverage service establishments

  • The government makes decisions on restrictions on the opening hours of food and beverage service establishments, serving times and numbers of seats. Find more detailed information at the official site of Finnish Government.

Group hobby activities

  • Group hobbies for those under 12 are not restricted.
  • In indoor youth group hobbies close contact with others should be avoided.
  • In adult group hobbies, participants must avoid close contact with each other when there are more than 10 people indoors and more than 50 people outdoors.
  • The use masks and maintaining safe distances is strongly recommended as much as possible, especially indoors.
  • The audience must follow the orders of the Regional State Administrative Agency on meeting restrictions and other instructions for public events.

Traveling to other parts of Finland or abroad

  • It is recommended to limit the number of passengers in vehicles.
  • It is recommended that all unecessary travel be avoided.
  • All travelers crossing the Finnish border are recommended to use the Finentry-service
  • Every entrant is required to take the covid-test unless the person has to provide a reliable statement that exempts from the test. The entrant’s covid-test is mainly organized at the border crossing point.
  • It is recommended that you have yourself tested for coronavirus 72 hours after arriving in Finland at the earliest.
  • A 14-day voluntary quarantine is recommended for all passengers arriving in Kymenlaakso.
  • Travelling in Finland should also be considered carefully. All safety instructions must be followed: taking care of good hand hygiene, safety distances (2 meters) and using of the mask.

Regional coordination group

A regional coordination group will operate in Kymenlaakso to organise the regional government work required by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health and to coordinate the measures. The group monitors the regional epidemic situation and the need for recommendations and restrictions aimed at containing the epidemic in Kymenlaakso.

The group meets weekly and includes representation of the municipalities of Kymsote and Kymenlaakso (Hamina, Kotka, Kouvola, Miehikkälä, Pyhtää and Virolahti), as well as representation of the Regional State Administrative Agency for Southern Finland (ESAVI), the southeast Finland Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment and the National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL), the Southeast Finland Border Guard District, the Gulf of Finland Coast Guard, and the Finnish Customs. The group is chaired by chief medical officer Marja-Liisa Mäntymaa of Kymsote.