While the government aims to fully dismantle the nationwide restrictions and comprehensive recommendations when at least 80 percent of people over 12 have been vaccinated twice, in practice the restrictive measures can be lifted proactively even before reaching the target vaccination coverage, the government noted on Monday.

Prime Minister Sanna Marin (the SDP). Photograph: Tony Öhberg/Finland Today

In its negotiations on Monday, the government decided on measures to open up Finland and lift the restrictions imposed because of the coronavirus pandemic.

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The government aims to dismantle the restrictions and recommendations when at least 80 percent of people over 12 have been vaccinated twice or have been offered the opportunity to do so.

The implementation of the revised hybrid strategy will begin in stages even earlier.

“We will start to dismantle the restrictions and comprehensive recommendations immediately,” Krista Kiuru (the SDP), the minister of family affairs and social services, said in a press conference on Monday evening.

In practice, the government aims, as soon as possible, to abolish the need for keeping a two-meter distance from others at events.

Vaccination coverage of 80 percent of all people over 12 years of age can be reached by mid-October, according to estimates at the turn of August and September.

Krista Kiuru, the minister of family affairs and social services (the SDP). Photograph: Tony Öhberg/Finland Today

The action plan aims to support the Regional State Administrative Agencies and municipalities in their decision-making.

The regional phases of the pandemic will be abandoned and the related recommendations will be dismantled. All regions will adopt a uniform model for managing the coronavirus pandemic, and further spread of the virus will be prevented primarily through local and regional measures.

As a rule, according to the government, there will be no restrictions on any activities in society. Even if there were clusters of infection in the area, the recommendation is that no restrictions should be imposed on low-risk events and activities. 

The government is currently preparing the introduction of a Covid-19 passport. Its purpose and intended use would be partly parallel and complementary to the risk-based restrictions. Anyone subject to restrictions could choose to use the Covid-19 passport and thereby avoid the restrictions.

The action plan includes a national emergency brake mechanism that could be adopted in situations where a local epidemic suddenly and rapidly deteriorates and where regional measures are no longer sufficient to curb the spread of infections. In such cases, more extensive nationwide restrictions would be reintroduced.

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