Food Authority’s Virology Unit laboratories begin to analyse coronavirus samples

May 11/2020

Adequate testing of samples is important in managing the coronavirus pandemic. The Finnish Food Authority and the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) have jointly initiated coronavirus Covid-19 (SARS-CoV-2) analytics. Cooperation applies only to analysis of coronavirus samples. The Food Authority neither takes patient samples nor has any contact with the persons tested.

The Food Authority’s virology laboratories have started to use coronavirus analytics. Initially, the laboratories will seek to analyse around 100 samples a day. 

“Virus analytics are part of the basic work of the Virology Unit at the Food Authority. We have now completed preliminary preparations and have harnessed the unit’s state-of-the-art laboratories for coronavirus analytics to support healthcare efforts,” says Janne Nieminen, Deputy Director General at the Finnish Food Authority.

The Finnish Food Authority’s virology laboratory is authorised by the Regional State Administrative Agency (AVI) to conduct Covid-19 testing of samples sent by hospital units. Testing is carried out in cooperation with the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL). The Food Authority does not disclose information the test results to outsiders. Every care is taken to ensure that activities do not jeopardise the health of the Food Authority’s customers or staff.

 “For the Virology Laboratory people, protection is everyday routine. Those of us in the laboratory are used to handling samples of infectious diseases that have been sent to us. For example, zoonotic diseases, which are transmitted between humans and animals, require particularly strict protection,” says Tuija Gadd, Head of the Virology Unit.

Further information:
Janne Nieminen, Deputy Director General
tel. +358 (0) 50 463 9586

Tuija Gadd,head of the Virology Unit
tel. +358 (0) 357 0328