Cities believe that testing should be better targeted. As a means, they offer software developed by Hus that screens high-risk coronary travelers, such as villagers abroad and seasonal workers.
The metropolitan area cities find the government’s proposal on coronavirus testing and quarantine of immigrants at airports impossible to implement.
The cities and the Helsinki and Uusimaa Hospital District Hus offer to replace it About the names Finentry electronic model. It would strongly target testing only to passengers who had been assessed in advance as potential vectors.
The cities and Hus have approached the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health with a joint letter on the subject.
Mayor of Vantaa Ritva Viljanen raised the issue at a press conference on Friday, at which the municipalities of the Helsinki metropolitan area new restrictions to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
“The proposed model is so complex and would require so many staff that it is practically impossible to implement,” Viljanen said.
Viljanen tells HS that Finland will not be able to continue for a long time so that air traffic is practically zero.
“We need to get a test model that can return at least 30 percent of traffic, which means 20,000 passengers a day. With the government model, it is a complete impossibility. ”
Government is currently collecting opinions on a temporary amendment to the Communicable Diseases Actconcerning testing at airports.
Under the amendment, the doctor responsible for infectious diseases could make a decision to quarantine a person for up to 10 days if it is necessary to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
The draft law reviews passengers arriving in Finland for different lengths of time and presents options on how to avoid quarantine. For example, if you arrive for up to three days, you will be released from quarantine upon presentation of a certificate of a recent negative corona test or will immediately participate in a coronavirus test with a negative result upon entry.
According to Viljanen, the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health is well on its way to developing its own model, although many cities other than the Helsinki Metropolitan Area have stated that it is impossible.
Vantaa the city says in a statement to the ministry that it would have to close at least two health stations in vantaa if the government’s proposal for airport testing came into force. Staff should be transferred to the airport for corona operations when they would soon be needed to deal with the epidemic, Ritva Viljanen said at the morning’s press conference.
Vantaa has also calculated how much manpower the government model of coronavirus testing and individually made quarantine regulations at the airport would require.
According to the calculations, the daily entry of 1,500 passengers would mean about 47 nurses and 47 doctors per day, and when holidays are taken into account, there should be 66 doctor-nurse work pairs.
“Such a number of nurses and doctors cannot be recruited from the labor market for full-time work,” the statement states.
Hus is also concerned about the intention to place infectious disease doctors at the border to make quarantine decisions. In Hus’ view, there are not enough doctors for this, especially when the epidemic requires their input elsewhere as well.
Vantaa Since the beginning of August, the city has performed coronavirus tests at the airport for those arriving in Finland. Based on them, the greatest risk comes from passengers who have stayed in a high-incidence country for a long time and who, after arriving in Finland, spend time closely with the population living in Finland.
Such groups include seasonal workers and village tourists who have been visiting relatives or friends.
On the other hand, according to the data collected by Vantaa, the risk of infection caused by actual tourists is at most moderate or low, because tourists spend the night in a hotel and meet Finns mainly for a short time.
The largest In order to detect tourists at risk, Vantaa proposes the Finentry software developed in Hus’ information management, which makes a risk assessment based on the information entered by the passenger himself before the trip or at the point of entry at the latest.
Director of Diagnostics Lasse Lehtonen Hus says that Hus developed Finentry and operates in Finland Coronabotin from the bottom. He estimates Finentry will be ready for use in the second week of December.
The risk assessment information asks the passenger about, among other things, the country of origin, possible known exposure to the coronavirus and behavior in the country of origin, such as housing, visiting nightclubs and using a face mask. In addition, the passenger should state the purpose of the trip to Finland and the place to stay in Finland.
Based on this information, the program provides the passenger with a risk assessment as well as a policy that can be specified upon arrival in the country. If the data cannot be recorded before arrival, the passenger could be directed to an airport health information point, where the data could be entered into the system and, if necessary, referred to a corona test.
The passenger can also save the result of the coronavirus test performed in the country of origin in the application and make a reservation for the coronavirus test performed in Finland.
“If the number of passengers is to grow, we must somehow profile high-risk passengers,” says Ritva Viljanen. He is not worried about anyone entering false information into the system – no system, he says, is 100%.
Fare could be divided on the basis of risk into three groups, the highest risk group of which would be symptomatic passengers, exposed, seasonal workers and long-term villagers.
The lowest risk group would be passengers coming from low-incidence countries, foreign tourists and business travelers staying in a hotel, and Finnish tourists and business travelers returning to Finland who have been traveling for less than three days and lived in a hotel or similar accommodation.
The risk would be assessed as medium if the business trip or tourist trip abroad had lasted more than three days or the accommodation had been outside the hotel or similar accommodation.
Small those at risk would not be quarantined and would be advised to go for a test if symptoms occur. The test could be taken at the airport if desired.
Medium- or high-risk tourists would be required to have ten days of voluntary quarantine and a coronavirus sample no earlier than three days after arriving in Finland. If this sample were negative, quarantine could be stopped.
Symptoms would go to the test immediately at the airport, other medium or high risk passengers not yet there. The reason is that any infection at that time may not yet show up in the test. If the test performed at that time were negative, passengers would probably not remain in voluntary quarantine until a later sample is taken.