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THL: Airport symptom screenings have detected few coronavirus infections

Article published
5.5.2020 at 16:57
Käsidesiautomaatti Helsinki-Vantaalla
Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) has published results from health sreening related to corona virus at Helsinki Airport. Find the press release of 5 May 2020 below.

"Health screening related to coronavirus has been carried out at Helsinki-Vantaa Airport since 27 March. By the end of April, 8,837 passengers had submitted the symptom questionnaire. 204 passengers reported symptoms of respiratory infection. Nine confirmed coronavirus infections were detected through the screening.

All persons arriving in Finland must fill in the symptom questionnaire, and anyone showing symptoms based on it are referred to coronavirus testing. Screenings at the airport have detected approximately 102 infections per 100,000 passengers. At the same time, approximately 5,320 infections per 100,000 people tested have been diagnosed at health care centres.

‘Based on the figures, it seems that coronavirus infections are rarely found through airport screening. It is possible that some passengers do not experience symptoms until later. It is therefore important to follow the instructions issued by the authorities and get tested immediately if you experience any symptoms,’ says Taneli Puumalainen, Chief Physician at the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare.

Most cases related to travel come from Austria

So far, approximately 45 % of all coronavirus infections diagnosed in Finland have been reported by doctors to the National Infectious Diseases Register. Around 20 % of the cases reported by doctors are related to travel.

The origin of the infection has been related to Austria in approximately 7 % of reported cases. Other common countries are Italy (approximately 3 % of reported cases) and Spain (approximately 2 % of reported cases).

‘Most of the cases recorded in March came from abroad. In April, the proportion of infections contracted abroad sank below 5 % because travel has been very limited in recent weeks,’ says Puumalainen."

Source: Press release of THL 5 May 2020