THL, HSL and the Helsinki Metropolitan Area coronavirus coordination group have updated their policy for wearing face masks.
Last week, the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare THL decided to abolish its national recommendations to wear a face mask in public to help slow the spread of the coronavirus and protect oneself from it. On Wednesday, the Helsinki Metropolitan Area coronavirus coordination group decided to follow suit.
Afterward, on the same day, the Helsinki Regional Transport Authority HSL also decided to stop requiring face masks while traveling by metro, bus or a local train. “We want to thank our customers and personnel for carrying the common responsibility in the past two coronayears,” HSL noted in a statement.
The separate recommendations to use a mask at schools, universities and other learning institutions in the area have now also ended.
Here’s where wearing a mask is still recommended, according to the Helsinki Metropolitan Area coronavirus coordination group:
- If you are in transit to a coronavirus test or treatment due to a suspected infection
- If you have symptoms of a respiratory tract infection and must move about in public
- If you know you have been exposed to the coronavirus (for example, a family member has tested positive) and you must move about in public
- If you pay a visit to social and health services as a client, patient or visitor, or if you are an employee of these services, in line with guidelines from the relevant authorities.
- If you are a member of a group deemed at high risk of contracting the coronavirus and are visiting public places, even if fully vaccinated.
THL, HSL and the coronavirus coordination group still stress that face masks can still be used at their own discretion in any circumstances.
“The coronavirus epidemic is showing signs of abating in the capital region,” the Helsinki Metropolitan Area coronavirus coordination group noted in a statement, “and yet incidence rates remain high.”