The majority of regions have started vaccinations in elderly care homes where vaccinations are given to residents and staff.

In Finland, Covid-19 vaccinations have progressed to larger vaccination groups and vaccinations have begun in more locations, the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) reports in a statement. The majority of regions have started vaccinations in elderly care homes where vaccinations are given to residents and staff.

“Personnel in intensive care units and other social and health care professionals in the first target groups have now been vaccinated comprehensively,” Mia Kontio, chief specialist at the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare, said in a statement.

The coronavirus vaccination rate in Finland has increased slightly in recent days. THL estimates that 45,000 vaccine doses have been administered, compared with 20,000 on January 8.

Due to data transfer problems in patient record systems, some vaccinations are not yet included in the statistics. THL is continuously developing the reporting of vaccination data together with regions and occupational health care.

The availability of vaccines is the most significant factor affecting the vaccination rate.

Currently, Pfizer’s mRNA vaccine is in use in Finland, and Moderna vaccines are expected to arrive in the next few days. The European Medicines Agency (EMA) will process Astra-Zeneca’s application for marketing authorization for the adenovirus vector vaccine in the week beginning January 25. The potential marketing authorization is expected to significantly increase the number of Covid-19 vaccines available.

THL noted that Finland is preparing for the rapid vaccination of its population when enough vaccines are available in the country, and there are effective practices for extensive vaccinating already in place. “Over 1.5 million people have been vaccinated against influenza in a few months each year,” the statement said.

Many municipalities have also planned to implement extensive vaccinations in new ways, such as through mass vaccination centers set up in large public spaces, where several people can be vaccinated simultaneously.

In Tampere, for example, coronavirus vaccinations of the population will be arranged through a multi-lane vaccination line. In Lappeenranta, the aim is to carry out vaccinations in a shopping center for easy access.

“In a pandemic situation, it is important to reserve enough vaccine providers, facilities and other resources for the vaccination of the population so that vaccines can be administered to large numbers of people and flexibly also outside office hours,” Kontio said.

The National Advisory Committee on Vaccines (KRAR) appointed by the THL has discussed the refining of the vaccination order as vaccinations proceed.

“It is important to get older people vaccinated quickly because their risk of contracting severe Covid-19 disease is higher. The recommendations will be specified when more information is available on the quantities of vaccines to be received,” says KRAR chairman Ville Peltola.

THL recommends that vaccinations of the next group in the order of vaccination begin once a large part of the previous group has been vaccinated. This will help to avoid delays and vaccine wastage.