Updated 30.10.2021 (Published 22.10.2021.) These instructions will be modified as required as we obtain further information on the COVID-19.


 

 

Risk assessment

Safety distances

  • Are safety distances no longer needed in workplaces?

    • The employer decides on whether safety distances are required based on its risk assessment. If safety distances have been implemented based on the risk assessment, the risks that are the basis for this measure should have decreased before the measures can be lifted.

Cleaning and hand hygiene

  • Should the cleaning of offices still be intensified?

    • Until 31 December 2021, Sections 58 c and e of the Communicable Diseases Act shall apply to spaces open for clients, participants and other public, requiring that the cleaning of spaces and surfaces is intensified in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19. 

      The employer decides, based on its risk assessment, on the intensified cleaning of the workplace spaces to decrease the risk of COVID-19 infections. In other respects, the cleaning of the workplace’s facilities, production premises and other spaces should be done in accordance with the appropriate hygiene requirements. 

  • Should the workplace have hand sanitizer for employees?

    • When there is the risk of an infectious disease, workplaces must provide people with a way to wash their hands, the primary method being water and soap with disposable towels. Hand sanitizer must be made available if there is no other way for people to wash their hands.

Facemasks and protection

  • Must facemasks still be worn in the office?

    • The employer decides on the requirement to wear facemasks on the basis of its risk assessment. Even if wearing a facemask is no longer mandatory in the workplace, they should still be offered to employees in case some employees want to wear them.

  • Can the requirement to wear a facemask be lifted in production areas? They are cumbersome to wear.

    • The employer decides on the requirement to wear facemasks on the basis of its risk assessment. Even if wearing a facemask is no longer mandatory in the workplace, they should still be offered to employees in case some employees want to wear them.

  • Should facemasks be worn in client meetings?

    • It is a good idea to have facemasks available in all meetings so that people who want to wear them can do so. Based on the workplace’s own risk assessment, the policy can be tightened up so that everyone participating in the meeting must wear a facemask.

Vaccinations

  • Can employees be asked about vaccinations?

    • The employer can recommend getting the vaccine and provide information about the benefits of getting vaccinated. By getting the vaccine, the employee protects not only their own health but also the health of their loved ones, colleagues, co-operative partners, and clients.

      The employee is not obligated to tell the employer about their vaccination. The employees’ COVID-19 vaccination situation can be discussed in the workplace, but no information about the vaccination may be recorded in the employers’ systems.

      In certain situations, if the employee does not disclose information about their vaccination status, the risk assessment should be used to review how the lack of information affects the safety of working. Depending on the work duties, work environment and infection situation, the lack of vaccination information may become an obstacle in work duties in which being unvaccinated is estimated to create a risk for occupational safety and health.

The COVID-19 instructions of the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health

For more information, please contact viestinta@ttl.fi

The guidelines of the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health (FIOH) are drawn up together with the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health (SMAH) and the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare. We also follow the publications of the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO).​

European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), COVID-19

World Health Organization (WHO), coronavirus