Coronavirus situation at the University of Helsinki
This page is updated with current information about the coronavirus situation at the University of Helsinki.
Main instructions
  • Teaching in the first teaching period is being carried out as planned. The plans and schedules for teaching in the second teaching period have been completed, and they will be implemented primarily as planned. When restrictions are lifted on the national level, the University will increase the amount of contact instruction in the second period, whenever possible. The planning of teaching for spring 2022 is currently being carried out according to the premise that no pandemic-related restrictions will be in effect at that time.
  • Hybrid work will begin on 1 November, with October serving as a period of transition.
  • From the beginning of October, University premises will be in normal use, with the exception of teaching. In the case of teaching, the first teaching period will be organised according to previous plans, while the normal capacity of facilities can be utilised as of 1 November, the beginning of the second teaching period. According to the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare, office work and contact instruction constitute low-risk circumstances.
  • As of 1 November 2021, the contact details of people attending public examinations of doctoral theses held on site will no longer be collected. The requirement of having the option to transfer the event online will be rescinded at the same time.
  • Protective face masks can be used at the University at your own discretion. At the same time, the relevant regional recommendations are to be observed.

The next info session on the coronavirus situation will be held on Monday, 25 October 2021 from 9.00 to 11.00. For more information, please see Flamma (requires logging in with University credentials).

Last updated on 13 October (Latest decisions; Protective face mask recommendation; For students and teaching personnel; University buildings; Events; Telecommuting, working on the University promises, working hours) and 1 October (For researchers; For new staff).

Decisions by the crisis management team, 8 October 2021

When organising events on University premises, the organiser is responsible for providing sufficient space, regardless of whether they represent the University or an external party. Correspondingly, the University is responsible for the sufficient cleaning of the facilities and the provision of guidance related to hygiene requirements. Posters, stickers and other instruction material will remain in place on University premises for the time being, as they serve to remind people of relevant health and safety measures.

Protective face masks can be used at the University at your own discretion. At the same time, the relevant regional recommendations are to be observed.

According to the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare, office work and contact instruction are low-risk activities. In the case of activities associated with a higher risk, event organisers or supervisors can provide guidelines that increase occupational safety on the basis of the risk assessments of the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (link in Finnish and Swedish only) and the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health. Risks must also be assessed when organising teaching (Recommendation by the Ministry of Education and Culture and the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare for universities, universities of applied sciences as well as providers of general upper secondary education, vocational education and training, adult education and basic education for adults during the coronavirus epidemic, pdf). Supervisors will be instructed in risk assessment in November’s newsletter for supervisors.

 

Updated on 13 October

Protective face masks can be used at the University at your own discretion. At the same time, the relevant regional recommendations are to be observed. In the case of traineeships, the safety and security guidelines of the traineeship organisation (e.g., hospitals) are observed. The response centres will assist members of the University community and partners in interpreting the recommendation and promoting compliance with it. See THL’s recommendation on the use of face masks for citizens.

The University is providing protective face masks needed in professional duties for the staff as well as for students and teachers involved in contact teaching. The masks provided by the University are intended primarily for working and learning situations. The University is unable to provide masks separately for commuting between your home and place of work or study. The University is procuring both cloth masks and disposable masks.

People with limited means can collect masks from mask distribution points organised by the Helsinki Metropolitan Area municipalities.

The University’s protective face mask recommendation will be updated, when necessary, according to national guidelines.

Updated on 13 October.

According to the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare, office work and contact instruction are low-risk activities. In the case of activities associated with a higher risk, event organisers or supervisors can provide guidelines that increase occupational safety on the basis of the risk assessments of the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (link in Finnish and Swedish only) and the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health. Risks must also be assessed when organising teaching (Recommendation by the Ministry of Education and Culture and the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare for universities, universities of applied sciences as well as providers of general upper secondary education, vocational education and training, adult education and basic education for adults during the coronavirus epidemic, pdf).

Teaching and examinations from 13 September to 31 October 2021 (the first teaching period)

Contact instruction is organised on campuses for groups of a limited size, taking care that participants are able to avoid close contact with each other. Lectures for large student groups are held online.

Teaching and examinations in the first teaching period will be implemented as planned.

  • Information on the capacity of teaching facilities is available in an Excel sheet on Flamma and in the timetabling and facility booking system Optime (both require login with University credentials) as well as, in the case of teaching facilities in shared use, on the facility booking website.
  • Small-group instruction has been prioritised in the planning of contact instruction. As a rule, mass lectures are held remotely.
  • First-year students of bachelor’s and master’s programmes as well as second-year students of bachelor’s programmes have been prioritised in the planning of contact instruction.
  • According to the plans, contact instruction is organised for groups of up to 50 students, taking into account the occupancy limits of the facilities. The response centres of faculties and other units providing teaching can increase the maximum number of students in groups.
  • Planned on-site examinations can be held so that more than 50 students are present in the same facility, provided that occupancy limits that enable safe social distancing are observed.
  • If all planned contact instruction cannot be safely organised, the relevant response centre will decide on the prioritisation of such instruction.

Teaching and examinations from 1 November to 31 December 2021 (the second teaching period)

When restrictions are lifted on the national level, the amount of contact instruction will be increased, whenever possible.

  • On-site learning will be enabled, for example, by expanding group sizes when occupancy limits rise.
  • Currently planned teaching times and dates will remain valid, and lectures for large student groups will be held online as planned. On a case-by-case basis, other remote instruction can be switched to contact instruction. In hybrid instruction, the number of students attending contact instruction can be increased, or all instruction can be switched to contact instruction.
  • Changes to teaching can be planned provided that the capacity of teaching facilities returns to normal.
  • Contact instruction and on-site examinations can also be organised for groups of more than 50 students.
  • When planning changes to teaching, plans previously drawn up by teachers and students as well as available teaching facilities will be taken into account.
  • Any changes will be announced before the relevant registration period begins. When necessary, faculties will provide degree programmes with more detailed scheduling guidelines.

Attendance in teaching in the autumn term 2021

Compulsory class attendance does not apply to contact teaching, unless the completion method in question requires a physical presence (such as laboratory courses, traineeships, patient encounters, skills courses). Degree programmes will determine substituting procedures for such courses. 

Students in at-risk groups who consider it impossible to attend contact instruction must contact the course coordinator as early as possible. Students in at-risk groups can be offered alternatives for independent study if the teacher finds it possible on the basis of the course content and learning outcomes. No verification is required from students for at-risk notifications.

Attendance in contact instruction when ill or in quarantine is not permitted. In such cases, students must contact the teacher, who will determine whether alternatives for independent study can be arranged.

Attendance in remote teaching sessions may be required as specified in the curriculum.

Teaching and examinations in the spring term 2022

Teaching is being planned according to the premise that no pandemic-related restrictions will be in effect in the spring.

If a student has contracted coronavirus

Teachers should contact their faculty’s head of academic affairs for instructions on necessary measures. Further information for teaching staff is available on the Instructions for Teaching website.

Use of teaching facilities

Compliance with the relevant safety guidelines is required in all University facilities: hand hygiene must be observed and participants must be able to avoid close contact with each other, in addition to which entering the campuses when ill is prohibited. Furthermore, the following instructions pertaining to the coronavirus situation must be taken into consideration:

Occupancy limits in observance of avoiding close contact have been determined for teaching facilities. The occupancy limit of individual facilities denotes the number of people allowed in the facility at the same time in addition to the teacher.

  • The occupancy limits are available in an Excel sheet on Flamma and the timetabling and facility booking system Optime (both require login with University credentials), as well as, in the case of teaching facilities in shared use, on the facility booking website.
  • Timetables and the use of teaching facilities are planned taking into consideration the valid safety guidelines and the guidelines on the number of people permitted to attend contact instruction and examinations.

The self-access facilities opened in the summer will remain open, and other necessary self-study facilities needed can be opened through joint planning by the relevant response centre, the IT Centre and the Facilities and Properties sector.

Computer rooms will be opened for teaching as requested by the response centres. Examinarium examinations can be organised in accordance with the teaching programme, taking group sizes into consideration. Instructions for accessing Examinarium facilities are provided on the Instructions for Students website. Support for digital teaching is available (Unitube studios).

In the booking of facilities, teaching organised by the University will be given priority.

Flex­ible solu­tions for stu­dents and teach­ers

The impact of the exceptional circumstances will be taken into account when deciding on extensions to the right to study.

Other instructions

Updated on 1 October

Research on University premises

See Telecommuting, working on the University promises, working hours.

Per­sons from out­side the University par­ti­cip­at­ing in research

When carrying out research-related interviews and research activities that involve individuals from outside the University community on non-University premises, the guidelines issued by the authorities on health and safety must be observed.

Laboratory fa­cil­ity use

When working in laboratory facilities, the University’s general guidelines pertaining to work must be observed. Equipment in shared use must be cleaned before and after use.

Some of the laboratories are also used in teaching, in which case one must also take into account the instructions for use of teaching facilities, which can be found in the Instructions for teaching.

The im­pact of coronavirus out­break on research fund­ing

Please see Research funding information on the Flamma intranet (requires login).

Updated on 13 October

From the beginning of October, University premises will be in normal use, with the exception of teaching. In the case of teaching, the first teaching period will be organised according to previous plans, while the normal capacity of facilities can be utilised as of 1 November, the beginning of the second teaching period.

The occupancy limits of the teaching facilities are the same as before during the first teaching period for maintaining a safe distance. Further information on teaching in the section For students and teaching personnel.

Protective face masks can be used at the University at your own discretion. At the same time, the relevant regional recommendations are to be observed.

The hygiene-related requirements based on the Communicable Diseases Act will remain in force until the end of the year in facilities open to the public (not work facilities):

  • Customers and participants must be provided with the opportunity to wash or sanitise their hands.
  • Customers and participants must be provided with guidelines pertaining to observing safe social distances, hand hygiene and other practices for preventing the spread of infections.
  • The cleaning of facilities and surfaces must be intensified.
  • Sufficient space for any necessary social distancing must be provided for customers and participants, taking into account the specific characteristics of the activities. Seats for customers, if any, must be located at a sufficient distance from each other.

When organising events on University premises, the organiser is responsible for providing sufficient space, regardless of whether they represent the University or an external party. Correspondingly, the University is responsible for the sufficient cleaning of the facilities and the provision of guidance related to hygiene requirements. Posters, stickers and other instruction material will remain in place on University premises for the time being, as they serve to remind people of relevant health and safety measures.

The leasing of University facilities to external parties can be resumed, and visitors can be admitted on the premises in compliance with the valid health and safety guidelines.

Lib­rar­ies, museums, Think Corner and UniSport

Helsinki University Library website

National Library website

Luomus public attractions, Helsinki Observatory and Helsinki University Museum

UniSport website

Think Corner

Self-ac­cess fa­cil­it­ies

The self-access facilities opened in the summer will remain open, and other necessary self-study facilities needed can be opened through joint planning by the relevant response centre, the IT Centre and the Facilities and Properties sector.

Computer rooms will be opened for teaching as requested by the response centres. Instructions for accessing Examinarium facilities are provided on the Instructions for Students website. Support for digital teaching is available (UniTube studios).

Updated on 13 October

According to the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare, office work and contact instruction are low-risk activities. In the case of activities associated with a higher risk, event organisers or supervisors can provide guidelines that increase occupational safety on the basis of the risk assessments of the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (link in Finnish and Swedish only) and the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health. Risks must also be assessed when organising teaching (Recommendation by the Ministry of Education and Culture and the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare for universities, universities of applied sciences as well as providers of general upper secondary education, vocational education and training, adult education and basic education for adults during the coronavirus epidemic, pdf).

Events

Events can be organised, but the hygiene-related requirements based on the Communicable Diseases Act will remain in force until the end of the year in facilities open to the public (not work facilities):

  • Customers and participants must be provided with the opportunity to wash or sanitise their hands.
  • Customers and participants must be provided with guidelines pertaining to observing safe social distances, hand hygiene and other practices for preventing the spread of infections.
  • The cleaning of facilities and surfaces must be intensified.
  • Sufficient space for any necessary social distancing must be provided for customers and participants, taking into account the specific characteristics of the activities. Seats for customers, if any, must be located at a sufficient distance from each other.

When organising events on University premises, the organiser is responsible for providing sufficient space, regardless of whether they represent the University or an external party. Correspondingly, the University is responsible for the sufficient cleaning of the facilities and the provision of guidance related to hygiene requirements. Posters, stickers and other instruction material will remain in place on University premises for the time being, as they serve to remind people of relevant health and safety measures.

Further information and instructions: University of Helsinki conference and events team, helsinkiuniconferences@helsinki.fi, helsinkiunievents@helsinki.fi

Con­fer­ences

International conferences will continue to be held online until 31 October 2021. It is strongly recommended that international conferences scheduled for the late autumn also be organised online. However, organising them on site is possible if permitted by restrictions on gatherings and if health and safety can be comprehensively ensured during the event.

The University’s conference and events team has instructed conference organisers in matters related to the cancellation and postponement of events. If an organiser has not received an email or has questions, they should contact helsinkiuniconferences@helsinki.fi.

Pub­lic ex­am­in­a­tions of doc­toral theses

Public examinations of doctoral theses can be organised and planned to be held on site.

Instructions on the use of teaching facilities can be found in the Instructions for teaching.

Updated on 1 October

Are you a new employee at the University of Helsinki? Ask your supervisor how the exceptional circumstances affect the beginning of your work.

If arriving from abroad, FINENTRY service provides information and instructions on arriving to Finland.

Please also consider the effects of the coronavirus situation on the residence permit application process abroad and the availability of public authority services related to entry to Finland provided in Finland.

Further information on restrictions related to entry to Finland (including quarantine regulations) is available on the website of the Finnish Border Guard.

Updated on 13 October.

According to the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare, office work and contact instruction are low-risk activities. In the case of activities associated with a higher risk, event organisers or supervisors can provide guidelines that increase occupational safety on the basis of the risk assessments of the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (link in Finnish and Swedish only) and the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health. Risks must also be assessed when organising teaching (Recommendation by the Ministry of Education and Culture and the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare for universities, universities of applied sciences as well as providers of general upper secondary education, vocational education and training, adult education and basic education for adults during the coronavirus epidemic, pdf). Supervisors will be instructed in risk assessment in November’s newsletter for supervisors.

Hybrid work will begin on 1 November, with October serving as a period of transition

The telecommuting recommendation ended on 30 September. October will serve as a period of transition from telecommuting to hybrid work. In October, supervisors and employees will agree on shared working practices.

  • Working on site part- or full-time is possible if the employee and supervisor consider it the best solution, for example, to ensure coping or the smooth progress of work, or due to challenging telecommuting conditions.
  • The telecommuting recommendation applies to University locations in areas that are in the acceleration or community transmission phase of the epidemic. In areas where the epidemic is at a stable level, working practices can be agreed on at the relevant locations.
  • Work requiring an on-site presence will continue to be carried out normally on University premises.

Tips and instructions for hybrid work are available on Flamma (requires logging in with University credentials).

Ob­serving com­mon rules re­mains the top pri­or­ity in pre­vent­ing the spread of the coronavirus  

  • Do not come to the campuses when ill or when experiencing symptoms of the coronavirus disease Assess your need for testing here: Omaolo service.
  • Be sure to practise extremely careful hand and coughing hygiene.
  • Leave room for others whenever possible.
  • Protective face masks can be used at the University at your own discretion. At the same time, the relevant regional recommendations are to be observed.
  • Do not shake hands or hug people.
  • Avoid unnecessary contact. In other words, meet in person only when necessary.
  • Please remember to clean any equipment in joint use after using it. Overall, cleaning activities at the University have been intensified.
  • We recommend getting vaccinated against coronavirus.

Meet­ings

Meetings can be held on site.

Online meetings

Tips and instructions for online meetings are available on Flamma (requires logging in with University credentials).

Tele­com­mut­ing con­nec­tions

Zoom and Teams are good tools for holding virtual meetings.

The University of Helsinki utilises the Funet Miitti (Zoom) service by CSC, implemented through NORDUnet in cooperation with other Nordic countries. The NORDUnet environment is not associated with the same information security risks as those related to the Zoom service in public use. Read more about the Zoom information security in a Flamma news article (requires login with University credentials) and and more generally about the information security in video conferencing on the Helpdesk instruction website.

Use a VPN connection only when needed, and remember to switch it off when you no longer need it. Due to the exceptional circumstances, there is a shortage of VPN connections at the University. Further information: Instructions for remote working (Helpdesk instructions)

If you need, for example, a camera or microphone while telecommuting, please write to helpdesk@helsinki.fi. With the permission of the relevant supervisor, new equipment can be requested from Helpdesk, which will procure it, but your unit will be responsible for the equipment costs. For this, you need the WBS code of the unit paying for the purchase.

Er­go­nom­ics and tele­com­mut­ing

University staff have been provided with adequate tools and ergonomic aids for working at home when this is necessary for the performance of work duties or employee health. Detailed instructions on ergonomics are available on the Flamma intranet (requires logging in with University credentials).

When returning to work at the University premises, any ergonomics-related equipment must be returned to the University. Supervisors must ensure that any work equipment taken home is returned to the workstations they were borrowed from. When continuing part-time telecommuting after the exceptional circumstances, employees must independently acquire any work equipment needed for telecommuting, while the employer is responsible for equipment needed at the workplace.

The University has ex­ten­ded the cov­er­age of its oc­cu­pa­tional ac­ci­dent in­sur­ance for tele­com­mut­ing from 30 March 2020

LähiTapiola’s supplementary insurance for telecommuting applies to work carried out remotely indoors as well as outdoors in the immediate vicinity of the telecommuting location when going on and returning from a break. The insurance also covers lunch and coffee breaks. The insurance does not cover breaks during which the employee leaves the telecommuting location, for example, to go buy groceries or to take a walk.

The supplementary insurance is valid until further notice and regardless of the country from which employees are telecommuting. The insurance covers harm caused by an accident, death and a per-diem allowance after an accident. The insurance does not cover equipment.

Flex­ible work­ing hours

Specialist and support services staff can work more flexibly.

  • Flexible working hours until 30 October 2021 are on weekdays between 5.00 and 22.00. If necessary, you can also work on Saturdays until 18.00 and take a day off during the week.
  • As of 1 November 2021, flexible working hours are on weekdays between 6.00 and 21.00. Working on Saturdays is permitted between 9.00 and 18.00.

Telecommuting will continue to be clocked in as telecommuting (remote work) in the system for monitoring working hours.

Detailed instructions are available on the Flamma intranet (requires logging in with University credentials).

Coronavirus vaccinations and work­ing hours

Coronavirus vaccination appointments are not included in working hours, but those working under the annual workload or the flexible working hours scheme can book an appointment at a suitable time. Those working according to fixed hours must notify their supervisor of their vaccination appointment time to make the necessary work-related arrangements.

Re­cruit­ment and new em­ploy­ees dur­ing the ex­cep­tional cir­cum­stances

Instructions for supervisors: Recruitment during the current exceptional circumstances at the University (on the Flamma intranet, requires login with University credentials)

Em­ploy­ees’ ab­sences due to ill­ness

You can be absent from work for five days of illness without a medical certificate. The five-day rule for absences due to illness also applies to caring for a sick child at home (in such cases, salary is paid for the first four days of absence). After that a doctor’s certificate is required.

Fall­ing ill and con­tact tra­cing – University of Helsinki / ​oc­cu­pa­tional health / ​pub­lic health­care

If you sus­pect you have con­trac­ted the coronavirus

If you suspect that you may have contracted coronavirus, complete a symptom assessment on the omaolo.fi website and follow the instructions to get tested by public healthcare. Further information on public coronavirus testing and services is available on the website of your municipality.

  • Do not arrive at your place of work or study before receiving the test result.
  • Getting tested for coronavirus is not counted as working hours.

The coronavirus testing services offered by the University's occupational health provider can be used in exceptional cases only, see Travel and visitors.

If you have con­trac­ted the coronavirus (pos­it­ive test res­ult)
  • You will receive a call from the healthcare service provider and be ordered to self-isolate, in addition to which you will be asked questions about potential exposures among your immediate circle.
  • Immediately notify your supervisor or teacher of your coronavirus infection.
  • Be prepared to answer the following questions:
    • Have you visited your place of work or study when infectious and, if so, where and when?
    • Have you stayed in the same facility for more than 15 minutes with other individuals? If you know the people concerned, be prepared to name them to facilitate tracing.

In accordance with the instructions of the Regional State Administrative Agency (in Finnish), the employer is obliged to keep a list of employees exposed to coronavirus at work. The data will be listed retrospectively as of 15 November 2020 with the accuracy possible.

In­struc­tions for su­per­visors: Notification of those exposed to THE COVID-19 virus (on the Flamma intranet, requires login with a university user name)

Stay home when ex­per­i­en­cing symp­toms of a cold or the flu

If you experience any symptoms of a cold or the flu, you must stay at home until you have not experienced these symptoms for at least 24 hours. For those working in healthcare, this limit is 48 hours.

Health care without municipality of residence

Persons without a municipality of residence in Finland are entitled to  COVID-19 testing, vaccination and treatment, usually also without charge. You can find more information on this KELA website.

Coronavirus vaccinations

We urge members of the University community to get vaccinated against coronavirus, since extensive general vaccination coverage in the population enables in-person encounters and normal University operations (read THL’s webpage Vaccines and coronavirus).

As of Wednesday, 8 September 2021, the second dose of the coronavirus vaccine is available at vaccination sites and pop-up sites without an appointment.

Information about vaccinations is considered personal health information, which supervisors or teachers cannot require employees or students to share. Neither can such information be collected. Naturally, voluntary discussion about vaccinations is permitted.

Coronavirus vaccination appointments are not included in working hours, but those working under the annual workload or the flexible working hours scheme can book an appointment at a suitable time. Those working according to fixed hours must notify their supervisor of their vaccination appointment time to make the necessary work-related arrangements.

Men­tal sup­port

If you are anxious and worried about the situation, support is available from occupational healthcare. The Huolikulma chat service offers easy-to-access support for staff. Early chat-based support may prevent concerns from developing into a major problem. The chat can be accessed in the Digital Clinic of the OmaMehiläinen application.

Occupational healthcare also offers dialogue-based support organised through remote services. Further information is available from Mehiläinen’s OmaTyöterveys service, contactable by phone at 010 414 0777 or via the OmaMehiläinen application.

A national coronavirus helpline has been established and can be contacted free of charge by calling 02 9553 5535. The helpline is open on weekdays from 8.00 to 21.00 and on Saturdays from 9.00 to 15.00. The service is available in Finnish, Swedish and English. The helpline provides general information about the coronavirus, not advice pertaining to health in general.

Mielenterveystalo’s digital support material relating to concerns and uncertainty due to the coronavirus epidemic (in Finnish only)

Infor­mation on the current disease situ­ation

Further information on the latest developments as well as on the symptoms associated with the coronavirus and relevant protective measures is available on the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare website.

Instructions have also been published by Mehiläinen, the University’s occupational health provider.

Other oc­cu­pa­tional health­care mat­ters

You can book an appointment with an occupational health nurse through the online booking system. In this system, all bookings can be made for a phone consultation. In the field Additional information specify that you wish to book a phone consultation, and the occupational health nurse will call you.

You can also send a message to your designated occupational health nurse or doctor through the occupational healthcare tab in the OmaMehiläinen app.

To book an appointment for any other health specialist, you must call the OmaTyöterveys number 010 414 0777. Mehiläinen prefers remote consultation whenever possible.

Coronavirus and quar­ant­ine

Quarantine and isolation instructions of the Finnish Institute of Health and Welfare

Quar­ant­ine in Fin­land
  • Notify your supervisor immediately of the quarantine and its estimated duration.
  • Agree on any potential absences, telecommuting and holiday arrangements.
  • Apply for the sickness allowance paid on account of an infectious disease from Kela.
  • Submit a medical certificate within 10 days to Payroll Services and a leave of absence application in the SAP HR system. In the application, specify the reason for your absence as ‘quarantine’.

Those in quarantine can also be provided dialogue-based support by occupational healthcare. Contact the OmaTyöterveys service either by calling 010 414 0777 or using the OmaMehiläinen app.

Kela will pay a sickness allowance on account of an infectious disease for the period of the employee’s absence from their work due to a quarantine. This allowance compensates for the loss of income incurred to the employee for the absence without pay. Further information on the Kela website

Whenever possible, an agreement on telecommuting should be made with the supervisor. If telecommuting is possible only partially, the employee may apply for a part-time leave of absence in the SAP HR system and, to compensate for the loss of income, independently apply for a sickness allowance on account of an infectious disease from Kela. Read more about telecommuting in the section Telecommuting, working on the University premises, working hours, leave.

Persons who record their working hours for externally funded projects must check whether their tasks in the project can be completed by telecommuting. Other tasks must be agreed on separately with the relevant unit director.

What if a family mem­ber is quar­ant­ined?

Notify your supervisor immediately of the quarantine and its estimated duration. Agree on any potential absences, telecommuting and/or holiday arrangements.

If you agree on an absence, apply for a leave of absence in the SAP HR system.

Kela will pay a sickness allowance on account of an infectious disease to the parent of a child under 16 years of age who has been ordered to stay home to prevent the spread of an infectious disease, causing loss of earnings. Apply for the sickness allowance from Kela.

In conjunction with telecommuting, persons who record their working hours for externally funded projects must check whether the assigned project-related tasks can be completed by telecommuting.

Read more from THL's website what you should do if a family member is quarantined.

Quar­ant­ine when ar­riv­ing from abroad

Latest travel instructions of the Finnish Institute of Health and Welfare

Quar­ant­ine abroad
  • Notify your supervisor immediately of the quarantine and its estimated duration.
  • Agree on any potential absences, telecommuting and holiday arrangements.
  • If you agree on an absence, apply for a leave of absence in the SAP HR system.

Kela will pay a per diem allowance to persons in isolation or quarantine within the EU. A certificate of quarantine or isolation from a doctor authorised to order such restrictions in the country in question is required. Employees quarantined outside the EU are in a more complicated situation, for evidently Kela will not pay a per diem allowance for them.

Employees quarantined during a work-related trip will receive their normal salary during the quarantine (doctor’s certificates must be submitted to Payroll Services), in addition to which the employer will compensate any necessary costs incurred by the prolongation of the trip.

Whenever possible, an agreement on telecommuting should be made with the supervisor. Read more about telecommuting in the section Telecommuting, working on the University premises, working hours, leave.

In the case of employees quarantined during a holiday trip, the absence will be considered an absence without pay, unless otherwise agreed. At the moment, in cases of employees quarantined abroad, agreements on part-time telecommuting or holidays can be made.

Persons who record their working hours for externally funded projects must check whether their tasks in the project can be completed by telecommuting. Other tasks must be agreed on separately with the relevant unit director.

Koronavilkku app

We recommend that all members of the University community download and install the Koronavilkku app. Please follow the instructions provided by the app.

In­struc­tions for su­per­visors

Instructions for supervisors for exceptional circumstances (on the Flamma intranet, requires login with a university user name)

Updated on 4 October

Travel

There are no restrictions to travel in Finland.

Travel abroad is permitted, but travellers should carefully consider the need for travel. Guidelines set by authorities must be observed when travelling. Travellers must independently determine the pandemic-related requirements and situation in the destination country. The Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare and the University recommend obtaining full vaccination protection against coronavirus before travelling abroad.

The University’s travel guidelines and the restrictions set by the Finnish government must be followed when making travel arrangements. Always check the current situation of the regions where travel restrictions apply and instructions of the Finnish Institute of Health and Welfare before booking a trip and travelling. When travelling, the general travel recommendations issued by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland must also be taken into account.

If you need a negative test result for a work-related trip, the coronavirus testing services offered by the University's occupational health provider can be used. You must have a valid travel plan approved by your supervisor.

A referral to a coronavirus test can be obtained from the occupational health nurse assigned to your unit via the Digital Clinic.

Employees must book trips through the CWT travel agency, making sure that the trip can be cancelled. Further travel information is available on Flamma.

If you need to travel on a personal matter to a destination to which travel restrictions apply, agree in advance with your supervisor on telecommuting, a holiday or an unpaid leave of absence for the duration of your quarantine.

Travel insurance coverage in the case of coronavirus infection

The travel insurance provided by IF will cover

  • Treatment costs if you are infected by coronavirus during your trip
  • Costs incurred from cancelling a trip if you are infected by coronavirus before leaving on the trip

The travel insurance provided by IF does not cover extra travel and accommodation costs incurred due to a quarantine. Since the insurance does not cover such quarantine-related travel or accommodation costs, reimbursement for them must be requested, for example, by submitting a travel expense report, which assigns responsibility for these costs to unit/project.

Vis­it­ors

Visiting scholars and teachers as well as visitors required for carrying out University operations can arrive at the University. Essential support services for research and education, such as equipment maintenance and deliveries, are secured.

Visitors are sent general safety and security instructions in advance pertaining to the exceptional circumstances at the University and information about the FINENTRY service and guidelines related to entry in Finland set by the Finnish Institute of Health and Welfare.

If University operations are carried out in the facilities of other organisations, they may have practices of their own. Particularly in Meilahti, special attention should be paid to the instructions provided by the Hospital District of Helsinki and Uusimaa.

Booked and can­celled work-re­lated or conference trips

When cancelling or postponing a trip, you should contact the CWT travel agency, as they have booked the trip. If the time to departure is less than 48 hours, please call CWT customer service at +358 20 5615 635. In other cases, detailed instructions for related communication are available on Flamma (requires login with University credentials).

Primarily, reimbursement of the conference fee for a cancelled conference must be claimed from the conference organiser.

If certain expenses have not been reimbursed after the above claims, any such costs will be covered by the University and allocated to the project which would have covered the trip expenses in the first place.

Fac­ulty of Ag­ri­cul­ture and Forestry

Prac­tical in­struc­tions for the ex­cep­tional situ­ation at the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry

Fac­ulty of Arts

Prac­tical in­struc­tions of the Fac­ulty of Arts for the ex­cep­tional situ­ation

Fac­ulty of Biological and Environ­mental Sciences

Prac­tical in­struc­tions of the Fac­ulty of Biological and Environmental Sciences in the ex­cep­tional cir­cum­stances

Fac­ulty of Edu­ca­tional Sciences

Prac­tical in­struc­tions of the Fac­ulty of Edu­ca­tional Sciences for the ex­cep­tional cir­cum­stances

Fac­ulty of Law

Prac­tical in­struc­tions of the Fac­ulty of Law for the ex­cep­tional cir­cum­stances

Fac­ulty of Medicine

Prac­tical in­struc­tions for the ex­cep­tional situ­ation at the Fac­ulty of Medicine

Fac­ulty of Pharmacy

Arrangements in the Faculty of Pharmacy due to coronavirus

Fac­ulty of So­cial Sciences

Practical instructions of the Faculty of Social Sciences for the exceptional situation

Fac­ulty of Veter­in­ary Medicine

Practical arrangements at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine during the coronavirus outbreak

In­de­pend­ent In­sti­tutes

Helsinki Institute of Life Science: Prac­tical in­struc­tions for the ex­cep­tional situ­ation at HiLIFE

Open University

Latest information for Open University students

Helsinki University Library

Library Services at the Exceptional Situation Caused by Corona Virus

Na­tional Library

Limited service

Finnish Mu­seum of Natural His­tory

The effects of the coronavirus situation at the Luomus public attractions

The university acts responsibly and helps society in its efforts to battle the Corona COVID 19 epidemic. The University wants to ensure staff and student safety and at the same time enable everybody to continue their studies and research in these exceptional circumstances. Under the authority of the Rector, the Coronavirus Management Team will make necessary decisions required by the situation.

The University follows the recommendations and regulations of the Finnish State, the University Central Hospital (HUS) and the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL).

A pandemic planning committee is active at the University. The chair of the committee is Vice-Rector Tom Böhling.

Furthermore, a management group has been established on the University level in accordance with the University's preparedness plan for emergencies, tasked with managing and coordinating practical matters related to preventing the spread of the coronavirus, as well as making decisions pertaining to the issue. This group is chaired by Director of Administration Esa Hämäläinen.

Read latest updates, symptoms caused by the coronavirus and ways to protect against it on the National Institute for Health and Welfare website: How to protect yourself against the Covid-19 -coronavirus.

The website also provides information to those arriving in Finland made by the National Institute for Health and Welfare.

Residents of Helsinki can call the city’s telephone advice service on the telephone number (09) 310 10024 if they experience symptoms or want to ask for advice regarding the coronavirus.

A national coronavirus helpline has been established and can be contacted free of charge by calling 02 9553 5535. The helpline is open on weekdays from 8.00 to 21.00 and on Saturdays from 9.00 to 15.00.

Updated on 14 September.

Common safety guidelines must be taken into account on all restriction levels. The University complies with policies set by the authorities and regional coronavirus coordination groups. Support activities will be restored in stages according to operational needs. If the situation worsens, recovery will be suspended and the relevant restrictions imposed. The University is currently observing restriction level 2 of its recovery plan.

Restriction level 3

Decision-making: crisis management team and response centres

Associated with the community transmission phase of the epidemic, taking into account the prevention measures on tiers 1, 2 and 3 set by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health

  • Telecommuting recommendation valid to an extent that matches with the relevant tier of prevention measures
  • Research: On-site research activities in accordance with the notification procedure and guidelines set by the relevant response centre
  • Teaching: Only necessary teaching and examinations can be held on site, public examinations of doctoral theses held online
  • Events not organised, buildings mainly closed, self-access facilities closed, significant restrictions to travel

Restriction level 2

Decision-making: crisis management team and response centres

Partial lifting of restrictions to University operations

  • A partial telecommuting recommendation valid, working on site possible upon agreement with the supervisor
  • Research: Research activities in University facilities can be increased at the discretion of the relevant parties
  • Teaching: Teaching is mainly provided online, teaching for small groups and public examinations can be held on site, taking into account the number of attendees and the relevant safety restrictions
  • Large-scale events are not organised; public attractions, customer service desks and self-access facilities can be opened at the discretion of the relevant parties; restrictions to travel

Restriction level 1

Decision-making: normal management system. Crisis management team and response centres, as authorised by the rector

Partial restrictions remain in place on University operations

  • Extended telecommuting arrangements utilised, working on site permitted
  • Research: Research groups transition to almost normal activities
  • Teaching: Contact instruction can be organised; public and mass lectures are not organised
  • Public attractions, customer service desks and self-access facilities can be opened
  • International activities (including travel) increased wherever possible

Normal operations

Decision-making: normal management system

University operations in the new status quo

  • The University operates in accordance with the conditions prevailing in the new normal
  • Integration of experiences gained in the pandemic into the University identity