Minister of Social Affairs and Health Aino-Kaisa Pekonen (left) shot down rumors in the parliamentary referendum that people with disabilities would not be admitted to intensive care or to assess the need for treatment in cases of coronavirus.

- People with disabilities have exactly the same rights as any of us. We all have human rights, he said.

Pekonen added that disability itself is not a risk factor for coronavirus, but that people with disabilities may be at risk because of their illness.

- These people should be considered as at-risk as well as anyone with underlying diseases. The same applies to intensive care for people with disabilities. Each of us should be treated as well as possible, Pekonen said.

The Disability Human Rights Organization Threshold reported yesterday that it has received information from a number of reliable sources suggesting that in some areas, people with intellectual disabilities should be proactively ruled out of intensive care in case of possible coronavirus.

For example, Christian MP Sari Essayah and Sdp's Merja Mäkisalo-Ropponen asked questions in the Great Hall of Parliament.

"Could these be true, this is an extremely serious violation of human dignity if this type of guidance is given," Essayah said.

"It is absolutely incomprehensible to put a scarf on your mouth at home"

The hall also asked about the use of protective equipment and its adequacy. Mia Laiho of the National Coalition Party, among others, said that the amount of protective equipment on the ground is a matter of great concern. He also criticized the fact that guidance on the use of protective equipment has been very confusing throughout the country and that the operators were not aware of the instructions to be followed.

Laihon said yesterday the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health has issued new guidelines on the use of protective equipment in home care, which says, among other things, that a mouth can be covered with a scarf.

"It is quite incomprehensible that home care workers put on a scarf for protection," Laiho said.

According to Laiho, confusing instructions do not inspire confidence. According to him, the staff must be able to trust that the instructions given are sufficient.

"Everyone makes the decision to wear a protective mask in their personal lives"

Pekonen said that there are two schools in the use of protective masks in everyday life, and he cannot instruct anyone in personal life to wear or not to use a protective mask.

- Everyone decides whether to wear the mask or not.

Regarding home care, Pekonen said that mouth protectors are not really part of normal working practices.

- Therefore, the municipalities' preparations for the situation have certainly been deficient or weak.

He said the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health could support municipalities in their acquisition. He also reiterated that emergency stocks are not empty and there are shelters.

Green light from Marin on a corona phone for kids

Laiho, a member of the National Coalition Party, suggested setting up a nationwide telephone for children and adolescents during the corona crisis. The idea would be for the phone to be a low-threshold service that children could contact and be instructed if needed.

Prime Minister Sanna Marin (sd) gave the green light to Laiho's proposal. He thought it was a good idea to have a telephone service that could be reached at a low threshold, and at the other end there would be someone who could talk to children and young people in particular.

- This was a good idea, we will definitely put it to the study. It's possible that this is already happening, Marin said.

On Wednesday, referendums will be held in Parliament to extend the powers of the Emergency Law and the decree on the closure of restaurants.