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Government decides on face masks and discusses border traffic in its informal meeting

Government Communications Department
3.6.2020 20.19 | Published in English on 4.6.2020 at 12.48
Press release 387/2020

In its informal meeting on 3 June, the Government decided on the use of face masks. During the coronavirus epidemic, it is essential to maintain sufficient physical distance and observe good hand and respiratory hygiene to prevent infections.

The Government will not issue a general recommendation on the use of face masks, but considers that masks can be used to protect other people in places and situations where it is not possible to avoid close contact. Such situations may be encountered, for example, in public transport during rush hour where distances cannot be observed and where people stay for longer periods of time.

When using a face mask, it is important to remember that it does not replace the primary preventive measures such as avoiding close contact with others, washing one’s hands according to the guidelines and practicing good hygiene when coughing and sneezing.

Face masks do not protect from virus infections, but they may prevent people carrying the virus from infecting others. A proper use of a face mask requires a proper technique for putting on and taking off the mask. This should be done with clean hands and the mask should be changed sufficiently often. If the mask is not used correctly, it may even increase the risk of coronavirus infection.

In the event of a change in the epidemiological situation, the Government will reassess the need for a recommendation on the use of face masks.

The Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare, the Finnish Institute for Occupational Health and the Finnish Safety and Chemicals Agency provide instructions on the safe use of face masks.

The Government also held a preliminary discussion on decisions concerning internal and external borders.

Inquiries: Päivi Anttikoski, Director of Government Communications, tel. +358 40 5364821

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