New coronavirus variant detected in Vantaa - instructions specified

Dear Guardians,

The new coronavirus variant that spreads easier than the original has been detected in Vantaa, as well. As soon as we received knowledge of the new virus variant, we have accounted for it in Vantaa’s infection tracking.

Everybody exposed to coronavirus will be quarantined for 14 days. If a person is suspected to have been exposed to the coronavirus variant, they are tested twice, even though they did not have any symptoms indicating coronavirus infection.

The exposed will be tested at the beginning of the quarantine and, for the second time, two days before the quarantine ends. Tests are done in several coronavirus testing points, and the test is free of charge.

When interviewing all the exposed (infection tracking), we are currently accounting for the fact that at issue may the virus variant. Therefore, we will thoroughly inspect whether the cases are connected with travel abroad.

The new coronavirus variant can easily be identified in the coronavirus test. Even the exposed with no symptoms will be tested twice. If you get any symptoms during your quarantine, you must go to the coronavirus test without delay.

The exposed or their guardians will be separately contacted, for instance, by a Wilma message that will give them more detailed instructions. In addition, day-care centers, schools and educational institutions as well as guardians will be informed of any potential virus variant, as well as of the basic coronavirus. Since it will take some time to verify the new variant, confirmation about whether at issue is the variant or the basic virus will currently take about two weeks. According to present knowledge, the disease caused by the new variant is not more severe than the original.

The number of infections remains too high

During the past few weeks, the infection situation has been stabilized. Nevertheless, there still remain too many infections and not enough people take the test.

Take the test even if your symptoms are mild

The symptoms of coronavirus resemble those of a cold and stomach flu. The symptoms include, among others, fever, cough, headache, nausea, diarrhea, muscle ache, sore throat, sniffles, shortness of breath, or loss of the sense of smell or taste. Everybody with symptoms of coronavirus infection will be referred to testing, regardless of their age.

In Vantaa, you can make an appointment for the test online via Koronabotti or by calling the coronavirus helpline, tel. 09 839 50070, available on weekdays at 8:00–18:00 and on weekends at 9:00–18:00. Test results will currently take about 1-2 days to be ready.

Safety measures to be followed

The new coronavirus variant is prevented by the same means as the original coronavirus.

  • If you have symptoms, go to the coronavirus test and stay at home.
  • Remember to observe social distancing.
  • Observe good hand hygiene and cough etiquette.
  • Sixth-graders and older are recommended to wear a face mask.
  • All employees at day-care centers, schools and educational institutions are recommended to wear a face mask.

There have been very few coronavirus infections at schools. Because of the new coronavirus variant, we are currently monitoring very closely what measures are required to maintain the good situation in the future as well. Schools have already preventively changed their procedures by minimizing close contacts. Families, too, must be cautious and, for example, avoid visits and overnight stays to the extent possible. This also applies to classmates, because the risk of infection is the greater the closer and longer the contacts between the children are.

Kind regards,
Communicable Diseases Control and Hygiene Unit
City of Vantaa

Published: 2.2.2021 
(modified: )