Finland is fighting the second wave of Covid-19 better than anyone in Europe

Finland It stands out in European statistics on the epidemic as the best country to deal with this second wave of infection. At least for the time being, with caution necessitated by the volatility of the past ten months. according to him European Center for Disease Prevention and Control, the cumulative infection rate in the past two weeks in the Nordic country is about 50 new cases per 100,000 inhabitants, the lowest number on the continent, and it is ten times lower than that in the Spain and her neighbor Sweden.

Although it’s not the only explanation, one factor of success is the fact that social (or at least physical) distancing is something that is ingrained in Finnish society. According to a survey conducted by EurobarometerThe Finns are the European citizens who have adapted best to the restrictions imposed to control the spread of the epidemic.

73% of Finns surveyed said the containment measures for the first wave were too easy or easy to handle, and a quarter even considered it an “improvement” in their daily lives. In the spring, Finland closed borders, schools, cultural facilities and businesses such as bars, restaurants and nightclubs, and also temporarily restricted freedom of movement at entrances and exits to the metropolitan area. Helsinki, Capital.

Digitization and population dispersal were major factors

“This result (from the survey) can be explained in part by the character of the Finns: in general, we are very happy to be at home and have no problem following the rules because we trust too much in our authorities,” he explains to the Swedish newspaper. SvD Marina Lindel, researcher in Institute of Social Research from University of Turku Academy, from Turku. “Not all Finns are introverted and antisocial, but we probably have fewer outgoing personalities than many other countries,” he adds.

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boss Finnish Institute of Public Health (THL for its acronym in Finnish), Mika Salminin: “Perhaps the personal comfort zone of the Finns is a little wider than in other European countries. We like to keep people a meter or more away; otherwise we feel uncomfortable” Reuters.

This larger trend towards social distancing was supported by another major factor, the high digitization of Finnish society, which has facilitated remote work.

“The level of digitization, in both private and public companies, is very high, and this has made the transition to remote work very easy,” he explains to vanguard Cesar Calvar, a Spanish journalist living in Finland. “A family of five had a computer per person, which helped with remote work and education when schools were closed,” he adds. It also indicates the ease of carrying out bureaucratic processes electronically with the administration, which contributed to the absence of major problems when requesting public financial assistance, for example, which was quickly activated from the start.

The infection tracking app has been downloaded 2.5 million times

Finnish authorities also attribute control of the epidemic to entry restrictions into the country, some of the most severe in the country Europe, as well as an effective infection tracking system, thanks in large part to the mobile app that has been downloaded 2.5 million times in a country of 5.5 million people. Another crucial element is the population’s obedience to general directives. “In addition to the less tendency for physical contact, a very important factor is the fact that people are more disciplined when it comes to following recommendations,” says Calvar, who also notes the large dispersal of the population, and soon tourism and a good preparation of the authorities.

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Despite being one of the countries least affected by the epidemic, the Finnish authorities do not show an attitude of triumph or complacency, but rather wisdom prevails. The National Institute of Health, in its latest weekly report, warned that there was an upward trend in the number of new cases and that the situation “could deteriorate rapidly”, particularly in the Helsinki region, where most cases are concentrated. Population and infection: The infection rate is about 113 new cases per 100,000 inhabitants. So far, Finland has recorded about 20,200 cases of Covid-19 that have caused 374 deaths.

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