– The coming weeks are looking brighter than the past weeks. Right now, it is essential that everyone continues to follow COVID-19 precautions to lower the infection rates. The decreasing number of COVID-19 infections and the progress on vaccinations gives us hope for a relatively normal summer, says Chief Physician for Infectious Diseases Jutta Peltoniemi.
Those who have received the coronavirus vaccinations should continue to follow the familiar COVID-19 precautions: wear a mask, maintain a safe distance, and take care of your hand and coughing hygiene.
– It is vital to continue to follow the COVID-19 precautions, and the instructions should not be overlooked just yet, Peltoniemi points out.
The number of patients requiring hospitalisation has decreased significantly in Turku.
Between January and March, a total of 2,785 COVID-19 infections were recorded in Turku, 1,539 of which were recorded in March. By the beginning of April, nearly 13,000 people has been quarantined or isolated.
Coronavirus vaccinations are available for people aged 65–69
42,994 residents of Turku have received their first coronavirus vaccine (25.5% of over 16-year-old residents). 4,057 of residents of Turku have received their second coronavirus vaccine (12 April 2021). Among the residents of Turku, 88% of over 80-year-olds, 91.6% of 75–79-year-olds, and 88.4% of 70–74-year-olds have received their vaccination. For 65–69-year-olds, vaccination coverage is 33.1%.
This week coronavirus vaccinations are widely available for the following groups:
- 65–69-year-old and older residents,
- people belonging to 1. and 2. medical risk groups,
- nursing staff who are working with the coronavirus patients and the elderly or are substituting during summer, and
- booster vaccines for those who have received their first coronavirus vaccine in the beginning of the year.
65–69-year-olds and people belonging to medical risk groups can book vaccination appointments either online at turku.fi/en/coronavirusvaccinations or by calling the COVID-19 vaccination helpline, tel. 02 266 0159 (Mon–Fri 8–14).
The staff of City of Turku health centres administers vaccines at the Turku Fair Center, and also provides vaccinations for the residents and the staff of private nursing homes. This will take up human resources in the following weeks.
The telephone services of health centres and the COVID-19 vaccination helpline are still quite congested. The lines are congested partly because some of the health centre staff is now administering vaccines at the Turku Fair Center and private nursing homes. The lines are also congested by questions about things such as AstraZeneca, which we do not have answers to as we are waiting for national guidelines. That is why it is important to know that all current information on coronavirus vaccines is available at turku.fi/en/coronavirusvaccinations.
Day care centres and primary schools will continue with same practises
Day care centres and primary schools will continue to operate normally with the practices introduced at the beginning of the year. Open day care and family clubs are closed until 2 May 2021.
Lower comprehensive schools’ clubs will continue to operate with COVID-19 precautions. Morning and afternoon clubs of basic education will continue their operations as it has in the beginning of the year.
Turku secondary and upper secondary schools will continue the hybrid model until 2 May
Secondary schools will continue the hybrid model by alternating classes so that one class is always remote and the other two classes are in the classroom. This to ensure safe distances in the school premises.
The hybrid model does not apply to the preparatory education and special support small groups, which will continue with the face-to-face teaching.
Vocational and upper secondary education will continue with the hybrid model until 2 May 2021. Vocational education will continue on-the-job learning as planned.
The proms of Turku’s upper secondary schools, Vanhojentanssit, are postponed from May to the turn of August and September due to the coronavirus situation.
– Every upper secondary school has the freedom to choose the best date for them, says Kai Heino, the principal of Turun klassillinen lukio.
Liberal adult education programmes
Adult education centres will operate entirely remotely throughout the spring.
The Recreation Division opens outdoor exercise facilities
Group exercise classes are allowed outside for everyone under the age of 20. The restrictions will be lifted on Tuesday 13 April. Safety instructions and distances must still be followed in all exercise facilities. Contact sports are not allowed.
Outdoor exercise facilities are now also open for self-motivated sports. Self-motivated sports on the playing fields and other outdoor sports facilities are allowed for groups of 6 and maximum of 12 people at a time in a way that the distances can be maintained.
Recreational activities for children at lower comprehensive schools (children born in or after 2008) will continue with safety distances to avoid contact. Recreational activities (such as sports club hours) in the city’s indoor sports facilities for comprehensive school pupils (children born in or before 2007) and other people under the age of 20 are suspended until 25 April.
All indoor and outdoor group and individual sports are also suspended, with the exception of top-level sports.
Infections and exposures in City of Turku facilities
Day care: Haritun päiväkoti, Heinikonkadun päiväkoti, Kastun päiväkoti.
Schools and educational institutions: Vasaramäen koulun Lehmustien yksikkö.