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North Ostrobothnian wellbeing service county established

The Finnish parliament adopted the Government´s proposal for the legislation on establishing wellbeing services counties and reforming the organisation of healthcare, social welfare and rescue services on 23rd of June 2021.

North Ostrobothnia will constitute one of the 21 wellbeing service counties in Finland. The wellbeing service counties will be entrusted with the health, social and rescue services duties that are currently the responsibility of municipalities, joint municipal authorities and emergency service departments.

The wellbeing service county will be officially established first of July 2021 and the responsibility of organizing the healthcare, social welfare and rescue services will fully be transferred to the counties on 1 January 2023.

The proposed schedule requires active preparation immediately after the implementation of the legislation in order to complete the required arrangements in time as well as to secure the service production.

The interim preparatory body starts working after the implementation

Each interim preparatory body will lead the preparations for launching the activities and administration of its wellbeing services county and exercise the right of action associated with its duties until the start of the county council’s term of office in the first months of the year 2022.

The North Ostrobothian interim preparatory body will be constituted of 22 members, who represent the region´s municipalities, the joint operation areas of basic health care and social welfare, North Ostrobothian health care and special care districts and the emergency and rescue services.

The distribution of memberships is based on the implemented preparation legislation. The members are office holders of previously mentioned organizations, as stated in the legislation, and act in the preparatory body on official responsibility.

The following members of the North Ostrobothnian interim preparatory body have been appointed regionally and are based on the Finnish act on equality:

  • Oulu, four members: Kirsti Ylitalo-Katajisto, Juha Torvinen, Jorma Mäkitalo ja Arja Heikkinen
  • Oulunkaari, two members: Leena Pimperi-Koivisto ja Anu Vuorinen
  • Koillismaa, two members: Jari Karsikko ja Jouni Wikstedt
  • Lakeus, two members: Marja-Leena Meriläinen ja Eliisa Tornberg
  • Rannikkoseutu, two members: Marjukka Manninen ja Anne Mäki-Leppilampi
  • Oulun eteläinen, two members: Johanna Patanen ja Tuomas Aikkila
  • North Ostrobothnian Health care district, four members: Ilkka Luoma, Juha Jääskeläinen, Sari Haataja ja Jarkko Raatikainen
  • North Ostrobothnian Special care district, two members: Päivi Lauri ja Anu Tuominen
  • Oulu-Koillismaa Rescue department, one member: Petteri Helisten
  • Jokilaakso´s Rescue department, one member: Jarmo Haapanen

Ilkka Luoma, the Director of the North Ostrobothnian health care distrcit will act as the chairperson of the North Ostrobothnian interim preparatory body. The chairperson will act at the same time as the preparation leading office holder and as the manager of change.

Kirsti Ylitalo-Katajisto, Director of Healthcare and Social Welfare of the city of Oulu, will act as the first vice-chairperson of the preparatory body and the Director of the basic service joint committee Kallio Johanna Patanen will act as the second vice-chairperson.

The concise and large political monitoring groups as well as the separate forum for the mayors of the municipalities will also monitor and guide the preparation work of the interim preparation body.

The interim preparation body is in charge of the preparation until the term of office of the county council

The interim preparation body will prepare the institution of the operation and the administration of the wellbeing county. The preparation body is tasked with the transfer plan of the 17 000–18 000 staff members, the preparation of the arrangements of the operation and the administration as well as the budgetary estimates for the years 2021 and 2022.

The interim preparation body will use its tasked powers until the county council begins its term of office. The powers of the preparatory body have been restrained so that contracts concerning employment or the wellbeing county can only be signed until the end of the year 2023.

The rest of the preparation organization will support the preparation body in its work. The recruiting for the preparation organization will begin immediately after the first meeting of the interim preparation body on 6 July 2021.

Learn more about the health and social service reform: soteuudistus.fi/en and the preparation in the North Ostrobothnia in Finnish: popsote.fi.

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