Two Finnish ministers, including Prime Minister Sanna Marin, shrugged off recommendations over the weekend to avoid close contacts with other people after being exposed to COVID-19, according to several media reports.
Marin decided not to leave a restaurant on Saturday after being informed she had been exposed to the coronavirus the day before, she said in a Facebook post on Monday.
Economic Affairs Minister Mika Lintila attended a floorball match between Finland and Latvia on Sunday despite being advised to avoid contact with others, Helsingin Sanomat newspaper reported on Wednesday.
The Finnish Health Institute recommends avoiding social contact while waiting for COVID test results.
Marin and Lintila were exposed on Friday at a ministerial meeting attended by Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto, who on Saturday tested positive for COVID-19.
Marin said she was at a restaurant when she received a phone call from her state secretary informing her about the exposure.
“He said ministers would not be quarantined because they all have been vaccinated twice,” Marin wrote on Facebook, explaining why she decided to continue socializing and dancing later at a crowded nightclub.
The Prime Minister’s office later said it had sent the exposed ministers two text messages on Saturday recommending that they avoid contact with other people.
Marin said she had left her official phone at home and instead, had relied on her assistants reaching her on her personal phone.
Marin has since taken two COVID-19 tests that have been negative. Lintila has also tested negative.
Finland has seen a surge of new COVID-19 cases in the past months, spurring health officials to worry about the healthcare system being overburdened.
Several big hospitals around the country have postponed non-critical surgeries and the government on Wednesday proposed a vaccine mandate for healthcare workers.