It is already official. The novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), also known as the Wuhan coronavirus, has arrived in Finland.
A young Chinese traveler coming from the city of Wuhan (where the outbreak of the illness began) has been diagnosed at the Central Hospital of Lapland. The case has been reported by the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL, in its Finnish acronym).
This is the first case confirmed in Finland, although health authorities do not rule out that there may be more. The patient -a woman- has been in contact with other 15 people in Finland before going to a medical center seeking help against a respiratory infection.
According to THL, the patient is currently in isolation. In their statement, health authorities try to calm the population by assuring that the risk of contagion and epidemic is still very low.
“It was to be expected that cases brought by tourists would also appear in Finland. The risk of spreading the disease in Finland is still very low, so don't worry,” says THL Director Mika Salminen.
Other people exposed
The Lapland Hospital District and the local health authorities will continue to work with THL to address the situation. There are about 15 people who have been potentially exposed to the infection. The hospital will monitor the health of those affected for 14 days.
“Finland has prepared for potential cases. Healthcare and laboratories have operating models in place. Hospitals have the capacity to research and treat coronavirus infections under isolation conditions,” explains Salminen.