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Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.

Factsheet for measure FI-2020-13/811 Updated – measures in Finland

Mobilisation of healthcare professionals

Terveydenhuollon ammattilaisten työvelvoite

Country Finland , applies nationwide
Time period Temporary, 25 March 2020 – 14 May 2020
Context COVID-19
Type Legislations or other statutory regulations
Category Ensuring business continuity and support for essential services
– Mobilisation of a larger workforce
Author Amanda Kinnunen (Oxford Research) and Eurofound
Measure added 05 May 2020 (updated 10 July 2020)

Background information

The Emergency Powers Act (Valmiuslaki) (1552/2011) lays down provisions on the power of authorities in emergency conditions.

On 25 March 2020 The Finnish Government, in cooperation with the President of the Republic, declared a state of emergency due to the COVID-19 outbreak. As a result of this, parts of the Emergency Powers Act were activated.

One of the parts that were activated was section 14 of the Act which establishes an obligation to work when requested.

At the time of writing, the obligation to work covers healthcare professionals only. This was done in order to secure functioning of the healthcare system and an adequate level of labour force in the sector.

Content of measure

This measure applies to all health care professionals and students who have come far enough in their studies to be able to work in the sector. All healthcare professionals between the age of 18-67 who live in Finland are within the scope of this measure.

However, individual helth care professionals experience, current job status and other circumstances also weigh in. Health care professionals who are caregivers to a child or other person cannot be obliged to work.

Public employment and business services (TE-services) are resposible for organising this measure and they create a database of eligible health care professionals. They will consult employers regarding their need for extra labour force.

Duration of work obligation is maximum two weeks long and it can be renewed once. Salaries are paid in accordance with collective agreements.

It is also important to point out that obliging health care professionals to work is treated as last resort and it shall be used only when other options such as regular recruitment are not enough to secure functioning of the health care system.


The following updates to this measure have been made after it came into effect.

05 July 2020

As of 14 May 2020, this provision ceased to be active. This provision was not used in any parts of the country since the COVID-19 pandemic has spread slower than expected and securing the functioning of the health care system has been possible without the use of this measure.

Use of measure

This measure has not been used in any parts of the country.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Particular professions
Workers in care facilities
Workers in essential services
Does not apply to businesses Does not apply to citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
Public employment service
Local funds
National funds

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role Unknown Unknown
Form Not applicable Not applicable

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • Unknown
  • Main level of involvement: Unknown


No information available.

Views and reactions

No information available.

Sectors and occupations

    • Economic area Sector (NACE level 2)
      Q - Human Health And Social Work Activities Q86 Human health activities
      Q87 Residential care activities
      Q88 Social work activities without accommodation
    • Occupation (ISCO level 2)
      Health professionals


  • 09 April 2020: Valmiuslain (1552/2011) 95 §:N 2 momentin mukaisen työvelvollisuuden toimeenpano (
  • 05 May 2020: The government abandons the appointment of caregivers to compulsory work, the list of names was collected: "We expexted worse" (Hallitus luopuu hoitajien määräämisestä pakolliseen työhön, nimilista ehdittiin kerätä: "Odotettiin pahempaa") (
  • 17 June 2020: A summary of the COVID-19 related policy measures set by the Government (Hallituksen linjaukset koronavirustartuntojen leviämisen estämiseksi ja riskiryhmien suojelemiseksi – yhteenveto rajoituksista (


Eurofound (2020), Mobilisation of healthcare professionals , measure FI-2020-13/811 (measures in Finland), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin,


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Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.