New project aims to reform national guidance system for rescue services

Ministry of the Interior
Publication date 26.2.2021 12.12 | Published in English on 26.2.2021 at 14.24
Press release 26/2021
Rescuers in the tunnel.

The Ministry of the Interior has set up a project to reform the administration of rescue services. The project will prepare for the implementation of the rescue services reform by developing the national guidance system to meet the requirements of the reform. The goal is to transfer the responsibility for organising rescue services from municipalities to wellbeing services counties in a controlled manner.

The project has been set up to prepare the organisation of the national management and guidance system for rescue services. In addition, it will support regional preparation and provide a basis for work related to developing the operations and funding of the wellbeing services counties.

The objective is to create a guidance system that is effective enough to ensure the smooth functioning of the national and regional rescue services system once the rescue services reform enters into force. 

Project set up to prepare for implementation of rescue services reform

Currently, the responsibility for organising rescue services lies with municipalities and joint municipal authorities. After the reform, the new wellbeing services counties and the City of Helsinki would be responsible for organising both rescue services and health and social services in their respective areas. Rescue services would, however, continue to be a separate sector working in parallel with healthcare and social welfare.

The reform would make it possible to provide more harmonised and thus more equal rescue services in all parts of the country. Rescue services could also better prepare for unforeseen threats, exceptional major accidents, emergencies and natural disasters.

The government proposal for the reform is currently being discussed by Parliament. In line with the proposal, the welfare services counties and the City of Helsinki would be responsible for organising rescue services in their respective areas from the beginning of 2023.

Janne Koivukoski, 
Deputy Director General for Rescue Services, tel. +358 295 488 420,
Tiina Snellman, Ministerial Adviser, +358 295 488 638,

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