Hybrid strategy to manage the COVID-19 epidemic

The hybrid strategy to manage COVID-19 guides the authorities in implementing the necessary restrictions and recommendations. The hybrid strategy was updated in February 2022 in line with a government resolution on the matter. The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health has updated the plan for implementing the guidelines set in the strategy.

Guidelines of the hybrid strategy

The objective of the hybrid strategy in 2022 is to 

  • stabilise society and keep it as open as possible, 
  • support post-crisis management and reconstruction, and
  • prepare for the ongoing global pandemic. 

Measures to fight the COVID-19 epidemic will primarily focus on encouraging people to protect their own health, offering vaccines to prevent the serious consequences of infections, and imposing necessary and limited restrictions. More emphasis will be placed on vaccination coverage, home testing and regional communication.

The aim is to move away from extensive measures. Some restrictions may still be deemed necessary, but these must be limited in scope and treat different sectors as equitably as possible.

The best interest of the child continues to be the top priority in decision-making. 

It is also necessary to prepare for the emergence of a new virus variant that is resistant to current vaccines and that could significantly worsen the epidemiological situation. We must be ready to respond to a sudden deterioration of the epidemic.

Equitable access to care and services must also be ensured.

COVID-19 testing and tracing strategy

According to the testing and tracing strategy, persons should be tested for COVID-19 by a healthcare provider if

  • they have severe symptoms,
  • they are at higher risk of severe illness and have symptoms,
  • they are pregnant, or
  • they are healthcare and social welfare workers.

To manage the epidemic, it is essential that people who have been infected or exposed take measures to prevent the spread of infection. Anyone with symptoms, even if very mild, should avoid close contact for as long as symptoms last, even if they have been vaccinated or recovered from COVID-19. Those infected with coronavirus must continue to self-isolate and follow the national and regional guidelines.

Contact tracing will focus on healthcare and social welfare clients, patients and workers.

Local instructions may be different from the recommendations made in the national strategy for COVID-19 testing and tracing.

The testing and tracing strategy will be updated to reflect the current epidemiological situation.